Ecstatic Meaty Velvet…. that is how I describe the end result of this dish. Short ribs are covered with spices and then seared, then the vegetables are caressed by the fire and finally the braising liquid of tomatoes, porcini mushroom broth and Guinness are married to the pot. In go the short ribs and they braise for 2.5 hours while the sauce concentrates as the veggies become succulent. I served them this time over Yukon Gold mashed potatoes with creme fraiche instead of milk. Sometimes I do them over grits. This is the kind of meal that ends with pristinely clean plates, except for those bones which gave up their marrow in the dish. A sacrifice well appreciated.
Here is how you do it, feel free to exchange out the spices to your personal palate, this is just what works for me. You will need 6-8 meaty English Cut short ribs to feed two. This recipe can be doubled, but when you brown the ribs, do it in batches.
1/4 cup of brown sugar or 1/4 cup of Sweet Onion Sugar (or you can do 50/50)
1 Tablespoon Sweet Smoked Paprika (or Hungarian Sweet Paprika)
2 Tablespoons Vik’s Garlic Fix
2 Tablespoons Bloody Mary Seasoning (or good black pepper if you don’t have it, the full bodied flavor is worth seeking out)
1 Tablespoon dry mustard
Alternately, you can use some much more conventional spices if you don’t have access to the above blends:
The smoked paprika is essential, find it.
- 3 tablespoons of salt
- 1/4 cup of brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons of fresh ground pepper
- 2 tablespoons of garlic salt
- 1 tablespoon of dry mustard
1 cup of re-hydrated dried shallots, drained or 4 medium leeks chopped (pale white part only)
4 tablespoons of home rendered lard or olive oil
4 carrots chopped into medium sized pieces
3 celery ribs chopped into medium sized pieces
2 bay leaves (4 if using fresh)
10 cloves garlic, chopped
1 cup of dried porcini mushrooms re-hydrated and then strained, reserving liquid
For even more mushroom flavor, add 1/4 cup of kibbled mushrooms
1 440 mil can of guiness
1 28 ounce can of chopped tomatoes with the liquid
Preheat oven to 375 (I use convection roast setting). Be sure that you will have room for the lidded pot or dutch oven to fit on the rack on the lower third of the oven.
Pat ribs dry and and arrange in a sheet pan.
Blend the spice mix and generously coat the ribs with it on all sides. There will be some leftover, reserve it.
Heat the lard or oil in a large deep pan or dutch oven. Brown the ribs taking care not to crowd them, do them in batches if your pan is not large enough. This should take about 1 minute per side.
Transfer meat back to the sheet pan and ad the shallots, carrots, celery and bay leaves to the pot and cook over moderate low heat, stirring occasionally until vegetables begin to soften (about 3 minutes), clear a hot spot and add garlic. Cook for 1 more minute. Stir in mushrooms.
Add broth, beer and tomatoes with their juice, then add the ribs and any remaining spices and spoon the sauce over the ribs. Bring to a boil uncovered
Cover and place in the oven and braise for 2.5 hours, checking after about 1.5 hours to see if more liquid is needed, if so add beer, stock or water.
Remove from oven and allow to rest for about 10 minutes. Serve over mashed potatoes, grits or polenta. Click here for the perfect grits/polenta recipe.
I doubt that there will be any meat left, but if there is it makes amazing tacos. Any veggies/sauce left are great for a soup, just add more liquid and puree.
If you liked this, you might also enjoy Smoked and Braised Pork Shoulder Latin Style.