Don’t you love it when you end up cooking a fabulous dish with minimal effort? Tasty to boot?! The first time I tried to roast meat, I failed miserably! Looking back, I was too stubborn to research important steps that make a great roast! I thought, oh i am just going to wing it! (pro tip: don’t wing it!). Always roast at the recommended oven temperature and check internal temperature when required. When it comes to braising meat, it’s easier when you don’t have to check internal temperature for level of doneness such as medium rare or medium. You simply want the meat to be fully cooked, flavourful and tender.
*Good To Know*
- Which is better bone-in or boneless beef short ribs? Either one will work but keep in mind that your cook time will differ. Bone-in short ribs need longer braising time but add more flavour. Boneless are good for easier portioning or shredding. Choose short ribs with a thicker cut and more marbling (strands of fat) for better tenderness.
- What type of Red Wine should I use to braise short ribs? I recommend full bodied red wines. Cabernet Sauvignon is my go-to choice as it helps soften the meat and elevates the flavour. Pinot Noir or Merlot are also good choices. Not a fan of alcohol in your food? You can buy dealcoholized red wine for flavour or you can replace red wine with additional beef stock.
- Can I use water instead of stock? Absolutely you can! Don’t fret if you forgot to buy stock. Adding water works just as well since simmering the meat for several hours turns the water into flavourful stock.
- Why sear the ribs first? It adds more depth and flavour to the meat when braising. If you want a more detailed description as to why, I found an article by Food52 where the Maillard Reaction is explained in great detail.
- Can I use a roasting pan instead of a dutch oven? Dutch ovens are multi purpose for roasting, braising, slow cooking and more. These heavy pots are made from enameled cast iron (or ceramic) and are especially great for braising since they can retain liquids for a long period of time. The downside is that, although an essential part of the kitchen, it’s an expensive cookware. Having said that, I don’t recommend a roasting pan. It’s more shallow than the dutch oven making it a not-so-ideal tool for braising meat. These pans are only meant for roasting and liquids within will evaporate faster. So what’s a cheaper substitute? You can use an oven safe stockpot instead (even a medium size 3 or 4 quart stock pot will work depending on the amount of meat you’re braising).
Ingredients you will need for this recipe:
- bone-in beef short ribs (thick cut with good marbling)
- full bodied red wine (ie. cabernet sauvignon)
- beef stock
- onion, garlic and spices such as bay leaf, rosemary, brown sugar, salt and pepper
- olive oil and unsalted butter (for searing)
- dutch oven or oven-safe stock pot
- your favourite side dish (I paired mine with creamy mashed potatoes and garlic broccolini)
Make sure oven rack is moved to the middle of the oven or slightly below middle of the oven ( you want to leave enough room to fit your pot). Preheat oven to 325°F (163°C).
Generously season beef short ribs with salt and pepper. Add oil and butter to a dutch oven and sear ribs (in a single layer) on high heat for 1 min each side. Set aside. Do this in batches until all ribs are seared. You don’t want to overcrowd your dutch oven by searing all the ribs at once. A reason for this is it will slow down your sear time by dropping the temperature in the pot and another is it will release more moisture into the pot making it less likely for you to achieve a nice, brown and crisp sear on the meat.
Reduce heat to medium high and add sliced onions. Sauté for a few minutes until soft and translucent (not browned), add minced garlic and stir to combine.
Pour in red wine and use a spatula (or wooden spoon) to scrape any browned bits from the bottom of the pot. Bring to a boil on high heat, add 1 tablespoon brown sugar, stir and reduce to medium heat. Continue to cook wine for another 5 minutes or until it’s reduced slightly (this is where most of the alcohol is cooked off).
Add 1 bay leaf, 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary and place meat back into the pot in a single layer on top of the herbs.
Pour beef broth evenly over meat. Cover pot with lid and with oven mitts on, place pot into the oven. Set timer ⏲ for 2.5 hours. In the meantime, cook a side dish (or two) to your liking. I made creamy, roasted garlic mashed potatoes and sautéed garlic broccolini as my sides (look out vampires!!).
When braising time is done, set meat aside on a shallow platter, pour a little of the liquid into the platter, cover with foil and allow meat to rest for 10 minutes before serving. Pour remaining cooked liquid through a strainer into a large sauce pan. Bring to a boil, season with more salt to taste if needed. Combine cornstarch with water to create slurry in a small bowl then whisk into the gravy while boiling until gravy is thickened. Remove from heat and pour into a gravy boat.
Finally plate your food by adding your sides to a shallow bowl first. Then carefully place your meat (it is very tender at this point) into the center (to the side or on top of your sides) and pour gravy over meat. Pop open a bottle of red wine and enjoy your delicious at-home dinner with your valentine ♥ date!!
Red Wine Braised Beef Short Ribs with Rosemary
- 3 pounds beef short ribs, bone-in
- 1 Tablespoon kosher or sea salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 cup yellow onion (1 large), sliced
- 2 teaspoons garlic (4 cloves), minced
- 2 cups red wine, cabernet sauvignon
- 1 Tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 2 cups beef broth
- 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 Tablespoons water
- Preheat oven to 325°F (163°C). Season short ribs with salt and pepper evenly on all sides.
- In a 4 quart dutch oven (or oven proof stock pot), on high heat add olive oil and butter until butter is melted. Sear seasoned short ribs 1 minute on each side in a single layer (3 ribs at a time) until all of the ribs are browned. Set aside.
- Reduce heat to medium high and add sliced onions to sauté for 3 minutes until soft and translucent (not browned). Add minced garlic and stir to combine.
- Pour red wine into pot and scrape any browned bits from bottom of pot with a spatula (or wooden spoon). Bring to a boil on high heat, add brown sugar, stir and reduce heat down to medium. Cook for 5 minutes or until liquid is slightly reduced.
- Add bay leaf and sprigs of rosemary to pot then place browned short ribs on top of herbs in a single layer. Pour beef broth over meat. Cover pot with lid and with oven mitts on, place in oven on middle oven rack. Set timer to 2½ hours to braise meat. In the mean time cook side dishes of your choice.
- When braising is done, remove meat from pot and place onto a shallow platter. Pour a little liquid from pot into platter, cover with foil and allow meat to rest for 10 minutes.
- In a small bowl, stir together cornstarch and water
- Using a strainer over a large sauce pan, pour liquid from dutch oven through strainer to filter broth. Bring broth to a boil and whisk in cornstarch slurry until gravy is thickened.
- To plate, add sides to a shallow bowl. Place meat to the side or on top of sides and pour gravy over meat. Enjoy with red wine!