Thursday, March 26, 2009

braised beef short ribs

when i think of braised short ribs, i think of Lucques. it's perhaps my most favorite restaurant in LA. the staff is attentive and friendly. the ambiance is cozy and unpretentious. and the food...the food is spectacular, especially the short ribs. suzanne goin is a culinary genius and it's evident in her seasonal menus. when i learned that her braised short ribs recipe was in her book, Sunday Suppers at Lucques, i knew i had to have and make it myself to enjoy at home.

this dish is so rich and comforting, it's the perfect meal for a cold winter night. however, it's so delicious, you'll be making it all year round.

beef short ribs are wonderfully fat and flavorful which makes them perfect for braising. a long, slow cooking breaks down the connective tissue, leaving the meat so fork-tender, it literally, melts off the bone.

mise en place
**i'm posting the recipe exactly the way i made it which is slightly different from suzanne goin's. if you want her full recipe, buy her book! :) also, i highly suggest making this dish the day before you serve it because as with most braises and stews, it tastes even better the next day.

braised beef short ribs
adapted from sunday suppers at lucques
serves 4 (generously) - 6
6 beef short ribs (3-bone center cut)
fleur de sel & freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 celery stalk, diced
6 cloves garlic
4 sprigs thyme
2 bay leaves
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
4 cups hearty red wine
6 cups beef broth
4 sprigs flat leaf parsley

sauteed swiss chard (recipe below)
your favorite mashed potato/potato puree recipe

preheat oven to 400 degrees.

generously season short ribs with fleur de sel and pepper. place on a baking sheet and roast in the oven for 15-20 mins, until the ribs have taken on a dark brown crust. (**i prefer to roast them in the oven instead of searing them in a skillet because well, it's easier and leaves me with much less of a mess.) remove from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 325.

in a large dutch oven or pot, heat the olive oil. add the onion, carrot, celery, garlic, thyme sprigs and bay leaves. cook 6-8 minutes, unitl the vegetables just begin to caramelize. add the balsamic vinegar and wine. turn the heat up to high, and reduce the liquid by half.

add the beef stock and bring to a boil. add the short ribs. the stock mixture should almost cover the ribs. tuck the parsley sprigs in and around the meat. cover tightly with aluminum foil and a tight-fitting lid if you have one. braise in the oven for about 3 hours.

to check the meat for doneness, pierce a short rib with a paring knife. when the meat is done, it will yield easily to a knife. taste a piece if you are not sure.

**if you do this a day before, this is where you can stop. let the pot cool and refrigerate overnight. the fat will solidify on top, making it easy to remove. remove the fat and bring it to a gentle simmer and continue w/ the recipe.

let the ribs rest 10 minutes in their juices, and then remove them from the pot.

strain the broth, pressing down on the vegetables with a ladle to extract all the juices. discard the solids. (if you didn't make it the day before and haven't removed the fat, skim the fat after straining.)

reduce the sauce over medium-high heat until slightly thickened. taste for seasoning. note: i did not need to add any extra salt. add the short ribs back to the sauce and keep warm until ready to serve. serve with swiss chard (recipe below) and mashed potatoes.

swiss chard is a leafy green vegetable, similar to spinach except that it has thick stems. the stems range from white, yellow to red, as mine were. make sure to clean the chard well and remove the leaves from the stems. discard the stems.

sautéed swiss chard
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 bunches swiss chard
1/4 teaspoon salt
dash of freshly cracked pepper
splash of water

tear the swiss chard into large pieces. in a large skillet or sautée pan, heat the olive oil. add half the swiss chard, and cook a minute or two, stirring the greens in the oil to help them wilt. add a splash of water and the second half of greens. season w/ salt and pepper. cook for a few more minutes, stirring frequetly, until the greens are tender.

plate the short ribs with the swiss chard and potatoes and a lot of the sauce!

bon appétit~!


  1. The ribs look so good. I have a freezer full of them and never know what to do. (I usually just have hubby put them on the grill) Now I can make a yummy meal with them.

  2. you just made my mouth water.

  3. I've been looking for a recipe for short ribs. I'm going to make this one today. Looks delicious and your photos are mouthwatering.

  4. Your recipe inspired me to try short ribs. I cooked your ribs and it was a success.

  5. Found your Blog through an American friend - thanks so much for providing great inspiration to this side of the Pond

    Keera (Somerset, UK)

  6. Wow excellent thanks for sharing, I'm pretty sure that this will taste good with some wine.

  7. hello i would like to read more about this interesting topic.