A Short About Ribs

It’s funny how as adults, we like to find other couples to hang out with. It’s almost like dating. The stars have to be aligned because there must be chemistry (not the attraction kind, we are not swingers) 4 ways. I mean, it’s been pretty tough to find couples where not only can the men be friends, and the women be friends, but the men and women must like each other too! Sure, we have a ton of friends from our last home where there is no problem. We have all become friends and enjoy hanging out with each other. I am talking about meeting new couples.

You meet, you wonder if they would be fun to spend time with, you ponder asking them to join you for dinner, a little nervous about asking. Then you muster up the nerve to ask and you get nervous about the “date” you all are going on.

The first couple of years my husband and I moved to Chicago, we had many first dates, but not many seconds, and really no thirds. We would invite couples over for dinner. I would try to wow them with my culinary skills and cheery hosting demeanor. We would drink wine, talk, laugh, and never hear from them again. It was crushing. We would ask ourselves, “Did I say something offensive?”
“Did I drink too much?”
“Did I give them food poisoning?”
“Are we boring?”
We never figured it out.
Finally, in the last year we have found some couples that we have actually had second, third, and even fourth gatherings with. We are happy to have found some friends. And having other couples to hang out with means that we get to host more dinners. This is something we truly love to do.
Last weekend we had great long-time friends of ours and their daughter over for dinner. They had made a trek to Chicago to see how their daughter did in the car before trying to attempt to drive 17 hours to Austin for the South by Southwest festival. I give them total props for this. Not only does their daughter get to experience a true road trip and an awesome music festival, but we also got to benefit from it as well. It was great to have them.
I wanted to make the meal special, so I decided to make another attempt at some braised short ribs. This time, I looked at recipes from Bon Appetite and The CIA Cookbook The Professional Chef. Taking those to recipes, plus putting in some of my own additions created one heck of a meal if I do say so myself.

Braised Short Ribs

4 lb Braised Short Ribs
2 Tb Vegetable Oil
10 Shallots, halved
1 Pt Crimini Mushrooms
4 Tb Whole Grain Dijon Mustard

4 Tb. Tomato Paste
1 qt Veal Stock*
1 c Demi Glace *
2 c Dry Red Wine
Preheat oven to 350F.
Season short ribs with salt and pepper.
Heat oil in a large dutch oven over medium-high heat. In batches, sear short ribs until brown and crispy on all sides. Set short ribs aside when finished. Add shallots to pot and cook until well browned. Add mushrooms and Dijon. Stir and cook for an additional 3 minutes. Add tomato paste and stir.
Add red wine and let it reduce by half. Add short ribs. Pour in veal stock and demi glace stir well.
Place lid on dutch oven and put in the oven. Cook for 3- 3 1/2 hours, until short ribs are tender.
When plating, place short ribs on plate and spoon sauce over it, making sure to get mushrooms and shallots on the plate as well.
* I was able to find these at a gourmet grocer/butcher here in town. I will tell you, these really do make the sauce super fantastic. If by chance you can’t find them, then replace them with 3 large cans of stewed tomatoes. It will be a different sauce entirely, but still good.

3 thoughts on “A Short About Ribs

  1. Kristi

    Erin, these look amazing. My husband has been longing for short ribs recently but we were never sure how to cook them…looks like we found our answer. Thanks!


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