Barolo Braised Short Ribs on Polenta
This is not exactly a "welcome spring" meal, however, I had 2 lbs of short ribs in the freezer, and knew this would probably be the last week I could make them.
It's still in the 40's here, and we will be wearing jackets for at least another month in the Northeast. More snow is expected for tomorrow.
If you can spare a bottle of Barolo for this recipe, do it.
The better the wine, the better the dish.
Don't buy a cheap wine that you wouldn't drink, it doesn't work that way.
It might be a little pricey to make this dish, but it serves 6 people and you will get lots of delicious sauce leftover for pasta.
I think you could probably use a Chianti instead (even though this is a Piemontese dish), but don't use a Cab or Pinot Noir. Stick with the Italians if you can.
The original dish is served on polenta in Piedmont, but the spring thinking in me (lighter, bathing suit weather coming soon), served it over mashed cauliflower the second night.
This is a fantastic dish. Makes the house smell amazing.
Probably best to make it on a Sunday, when you have time.
Barolo Braised Short Ribs: (adapted from Nancy Silverton, Mario, and a few other cookbooks I had)
6 meaty beef short ribs (about 2 lbs.)
2 tsp kosher salt & pepper
1 large onion, cut into 2" pieces
1 large celery rib, cut into big pieces
1 large carrot, cut into big pieces
4 cloves garlic, peeled, left whole
1 bottle 750ml Barolo red wine
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 small can diced tomatoes
a few sprigs of fresh rosemary
a few sprigs of fresh thyme
strips of an orange, peeled w/ a vegetable peeler
3-4 cups of good quality beef or veal stock
Have everything ready so it makes the process easier.
Preheat oven to 350F.
Season the short ribs liberally w/ the kosher salt & pepper.
Let rest about an hour before searing.
In a large Dutch oven, heat a layer of olive oil.
When the oil is shimmering, add in the short ribs. Brown 5 minutes on each side and remove to a platter.
Turn the heat down to medium and add the vegetables to the skillet and cook until translucent, about 7 minutes. Add in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute, stirring around.
Pour in the bottle of Barolo (saving a sip for yourself) and simmer for about 15 minutes on low until the sauce is getting nice and thick and has reduced by half.
Add in the can of tomatoes and cook another minute.
Place the short ribs back into the pot and add in the herbs and orange zest.
Pour in the beef stock to the top of the short ribs only, not to cover them (about 3 cups).
Bring everything to a boil, then cover the pot and carefully transfer to the preheated oven.
Cook about 2 hours until meat is falling off the bone.
Let meat rest in the pot with the sauce for 30 minutes .
Remove the short ribs to a platter and keep warm.
You can strain the vegetables from the sauce thru a mesh strainer if you like and boil it down after you have removed the meat from the pot, or just leave them in the sauce.
After a few minutes of simmering, the sauce will be glossy and thick.
Plate one short rib per person (or 2 if you are hungry!) over polenta or mashed potatoes and pour this gorgeous sauce over the meat.
Shred the rest of the meat and discard the bones.
Freeze the meat and sauce to serve another time over pasta. You will be happy you had some leftover, believe me.
This is even better the second day.
Delicious served on polenta, roasted cauliflower mash or pasta.