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Beef Short Ribs

For as badly as I want to cook more, to eat healthier, and to make dinner a daily time of repose and reflection, it is not fun to cook for one person. It is less fun to eat dinner alone. Especially after being house-bound for two days due to snow and ice. I ate my dinner tonight in front of Homeland (catching up on season 3), in the living room, over the coffee table. Sigh.

But I will try to cook more, write more, eat healthier, and make dinner a time of repose and reflection. I have habits I want to change. I've read it takes 28 days to change habits. I do not do well with delayed gratification.

Yesterday, I found a 1.67 lb pack of beef short ribs in the freezer. The chefs on Top Chef make braised short ribs all the time. They seem to be an all-around favorite for both cooking and eating. I checked several recipes online and opted for this one, as I had limited ingredients and needed to improvise.

I substituted 12 oz of Bourdeaux for the beer, and 1 cup of chicken broth for the beef broth. I didn't have beef broth, and Tom Colicchio's recipe calls for chicken broth, so why not? (
http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/braised-short-ribs)

I was hesitant to use the dutch oven and only cook the meat for 2 hours. But I wanted to do something different from the crock-pot. The wine was a good idea. The sauce was rich and savory, like Boeuf Bourguignon. I cooked the ribs on low heat for about 3 hours total. I made my favorite smashed potatoes (boiled cubed potatoes smashed with butter, salt and a little milk), and a spinach salad (baby spinach, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, croutons). The only thing missing was a crusty baguette to sop up all the juice. I can do that with the leftovers.

It was a very good meal. Homeland was an okay episode. Had I started earlier, I would have made chocolate cupcakes to finish things off. I guess I'll save that for the leftovers, too.

While short ribs are fun to cook and experiment with, they are not my favorite. A good wintry meal, for sure, if they happen to be in the freezer. But I can't eat a hearty beef dish too many nights in a row. I love pot roast,
Boeuf Bourguignon, these ribs... in small quantities or special occasions. We'll see how well I do on the leftovers.

Simple Beef Short Ribs (http://allrecipes.com/recipe/simple-beef-short-ribs/)
Ingredients:
1 pound beef short ribs
1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon olive oil           
1 tablespoon butter

1 onion, sliced
1 clove garlic
1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle stout beer
1 cup beef stock

Directions:
Season the short ribs with salt and pepper, then dredge in flour until coated. Shake off the excess flour.
Heat the olive oil and butter in a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Cook the ribs until browned on each side, about 5 minutes per side. Remove from the skillet and set aside. Add the onion and garlic to the skillet; cook and stir until onion is tender, about 5 minutes. Return the ribs to the skillet and pour in the beer. Stir, scraping the bottom of the pan, until all of the browned bits have mixed in with the liquid. Pour in the beef stock, cover and simmer over low heat until very tender, about 2 hours.




prep

short ribs

braising

dinner
ribs closeup


And here are the pictures I could finally upload from Thursday's soup. Delicious!!

Soup prep

wine

Beef Veg Soup

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