One of the best comfort foods in my opinion are Short Ribs. This is my take on this classic comfort food, but fair warning this is by no means a healthy recipe.
First lets talk about short ribs and what they are. First there are 2 types of short ribs, the Flaken Cut or BBQ-style short ribs which cuts the ribs into strips containing 3 bones and the meat between those ribs usually 1-2 inches thick. I know this is how the local Sam’s Club sells them in this cut. The other cut is the English style which is the way most of us are used to seeing them. The English style, like these English style Short ribs, is cut parallel to the bone and leaves the bone up to 6 inches in length.
Along with different cuts the meat can also come from different sections of beef. They can come from the Chuck, the Plate or the Ribs. Ribs from the Chuck tend to be meatier but can be tougher due to the amount of connective tissue. Ribs from the Plate tend to be fattier than from the other 2 sections. Short ribs from the Rib section are known as Dinosaur ribs the big suckers you see at a lot of the BBQ places that smoke them low and slow.
Today we will be working with English style ribs from the Plate.
First thing to do as I always do with meat is take it out of the refrigerator about 20-30 minutes before I start cooking to get the meat up to room temp. Once the meat is ready to go at room temp pre heat the oven to 325 and set your oven rack on the lowest or 2nd to lowest height depending on the size of your braising vessel. Pat the ribs dry with a paper towel and season liberally with salt and pepper on all sides. Next step is to get your Dutch oven going on the stove top over medium high heat. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in the Dutch oven and then working in batches of about 3 ribs at a time so as not to over load the bottom sear all six sides of the ribs. Yeah that’s right I said six sides, remember to sear the ends where the tips of the bone are.
Once all six sides are seared and have become what QVC’s resident foodie David Venable calls GBD (golden brown delicious) remove the ribs and place on a plate. Continue working until all your ribs are seared. Turn the stove down to medium heat.
Next take a half pound of bacon and cut into bit size pieces and place in the dutch oven. It will take a bit longer over medium heat to cook the bacon but it will also render out the fat which is what we want. so while the bacon is in thinly slice 2 medium yellow onions long ways from pole to pole. Once the fat starts to render and the bacon begins to crisp add the onions to the bacon and season with salt and pepper. Let the onions saute with the bacon cook together until the onions soften.
Return the ribs to the bacon and onions. Add 3 cups beef broth and 12 oz of your favorite beer enough to almost cover the ribs. I say your favorite beer because if you don’t want to drink it you dont want to cook with it, and beer is truly a personal preference. I will not tell you what type of beer because your taste may be different from mine. I have used all types of beer for this recipe, Stouts, Lagers, Ales, IPAs etc and they all work. The only thing I have not tried is Sour but then again I don’t drink sours. So again use what is your favorite I really like using Hazelnut Brown Nectar from Rogue Ales.
Cover the dutch oven and return to the oven and braise for 3 hours. I know you’re thinking other recipes I have seen say to pour off the fat before adding the braising liquid but why oh why would you pour off bacon fat. Use the bacon fat as part of the braising liquid to get the hint of bacon through each bite of the rib. After the braising serve the short ribs over rice top with the bacon onions and a bit of the braising liquid and garnish with green onions cut on the bias.
2 lbs bone in English style Short Ribs
2 medium yellow onions slice thinly
1/2 lb bacon cut to bite size
3 cups beef broth
12 oz beer
salt and fresh cracked pepper
1 Pre heat oven 325
2 pat dry short ribs and season with salt and pepper
3 melt 2 tablespoons butter in a dutch oven over medium high heat
4 sear all sides of the short ribs working in batches removing ribs to a plate when done
5 lower heat to medium add bacon
6 when bacon begins to render and crisp add onions and season with salt and pepper
7 when onions become tender return beef to the dutch oven pour in broth and beer to almost cover the ribs
8 Cover with the lid and move to the oven for 3 hours
9 after braising serve over rice topped with the onions and bacon garnish with green onions