On the Menu - What Are Short Ribs?

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On the Menu - What Are Short Ribs?

Thursday, January 21, 2021

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Tender, full of flavour, and delicious, there's nothing quite like a plate of short ribs. Whether you prepare these ribs braised, grilled, or cooked another way, creating a great dish starts with understanding the cut and the best ways to bring out its flavour. Thursday Food, with the help of Master Meat Crafter Gregory Burrowes, highlights short ribs, the different cuts and introduces two recipes: Red Wine-Braised Short Ribs and Grilled Flanken-Cut Short Ribs.

Did you know? The short ribs don't actually come from the rib of the cow, but the chuck, which is the pectoral area?

Short ribs are squares or rectangles of beef that generally come from the chuck — the shoulder — of the animal. Short ribs are commonly cut into 2x3-inch rectangles, giving you a cross-section view of the layers of fat, meat, and flat rib bones. You can also purchase boneless short ribs. Either way, short ribs require long, slow cooking for tender results because they start out so tough. That's why braised short ribs are common. When shopping for short ribs, look for pieces that are meaty — there should be more meat than fat, and the meat should cover the bone.

Types of short ribs

Short ribs can be cut in two main ways: English-cut and flaken-cut.

English-cut: The ribs are cut parallel to the bone, with one bone per piece. They tend to hold their shape even after a long braise and make an impressive presentation.

Flanken-cut: The ribs are cut across the bone. Each piece has three to four short sections of bone with a generous portion of meat around them. The cooked ribs should fall off the bone in tender pieces. It might sounds intimidating, but it's actually a very straightforward cooking method and yields delicious results that taste gourmet.

How to cook beef short ribs

Traditionally, beef short ribs are braised. Braising is a combination of dry and moist cooking methods where you sear the meat and then bake the meat in a liquid.

Red Wine-Braised Short Ribs

Ingredients:

5 pounds bone-in beef short ribs, cut crosswise into 2-inch pieces

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

3 medium onions, chopped

3 medium carrots, peeled, chopped

2 celery stalks, chopped

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1 750 ml bottle dry red wine (preferably Cabernet Sauvignon)

10 sprigs flat-leaf parsley

8 sprigs thyme

4 sprigs oregano

2 sprigs rosemary

2 fresh or dried bay leaves

1 head of garlic, halved crosswise

4 cups low-salt beef stock

Method:

Preheat oven to 350F. Season short ribs with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high. Working in two batches, brown short ribs on all sides, about 8 minutes per batch. Transfer short ribs to a plate. Pour off all but 3 tablespoons drippings from pot.

Add onions, carrots, and celery to pot and cook over medium-high heat, stirring often, until onions are browned, about 5 minutes. Add flour and tomato paste; cook, stirring constantly, until well-combined and deep red, 2-3 minutes. Stir in wine, then add short ribs with any accumulated juices. Bring to a boil; lower heat to medium and simmer until wine is reduced by half, about 25 minutes. Add all herbs to pot along with garlic. Stir in stock. Bring to a boil, cover, and transfer to oven.

Cook until short ribs are tender, 2-2 hours. Transfer short ribs to a platter. Strain sauce from pot into a measuring cup. Spoon fat from surface of sauce and discard; season sauce to taste with salt and pepper. Serve in shallow bowls over mashed potatoes with sauce spooned over.

Grilled Flanken-Cut Short Ribs

Ingredients:

3 pounds (1.5 kg) flanken-cut beef short ribs

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

2 teaspoons garlic powder

2 teaspoons sweet paprika

Flaky sea salt for sprinkling

Method:

Prepare a medium-hot fire in a grill.

Season the short ribs with kosher salt and pepper, then sprinkle all over with the garlic powder and paprika. Arrange the ribs on the grill and cook, turning once, until charred and cooked through, about 3 minutes per side.

Transfer the short ribs to a carving board, cover loosely with aluminum foil and let rest for 5 minutes. Arrange the short ribs on a platter, sprinkle with flaky sea salt and serve.

Recipes from: www.bonappetit.com & www.williams-sonoma.com


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