Sunday, September 22, 2013

Beef Short Ribs braised in BBQ Sauce

We are fans of the short rib around here, its the perfect slow simmer on the stove on a cold day. Or in a crock pot.  Or in the oven, you chose the results are the same.  Yummy.

The theme of this post is really caramelization.  That process of bringing out the natural sugars through searing beef or sauteing onions.  I've heard it a few times on TV, not sure who the chef is, "Color equals Flavor" and they aren't kidding.  With this recipe, actually most recipes, the more color you bring with searing and sauteing the better the depth of flavor as the natural sugars are used to their best advantage.

Take the time to get a good sear on the beef.  Take your time to bring out the sugars in the onion.  You won't be disappointed with the results.  That brown stuff at the bottom of the pan...its called "fond" and it is a ton of flavor that will work its way into the braising liquid when you deglaze the pan.  Your clear amber liquid suddenly becomes dark brown from the fond and very rich in flavor.  Trust me, all that time you put into the sear and saute will not be wasted when you deglaze it all comes to life.

Braising is my favorite way to cook tough cuts like a beef short rib. You use just enough liquid to come to the top of the meat and let it simmer away for a few hours.  You end up with a succulent, melt in your mouth, fork tender piece of meat.

The pan you use for braising needs to be a heavy pan that will spread the heat evenly for a long period of time.  I use a Le Creuset Doufeu but any heavy no reactive pan with a tight fitting lid will work.  The point is that you want even heating with all the steam retained so it doesn't evaporate away all your braising liquid.

Beef Short Ribs braised in BBQ Sauce

  • 2-3 lbs boneless beef short ribs
  • 2T Montreal steak seasoning
  • Olive oil.
  • 2 large onions rough chopped
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 2 cans beer - I used Millers MGD
  • 1/4 c Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 T Sriracha
  • 2T red wine vinegar
  • 1 T liquid smoke

Coat all side of beef short ribs with Montreal In large braising pan heat a couple of tablespoons olive oil until it starts to shimmer. You will need to sear short ribs in a few batches to get good color on them.  Add a few short ribs to the hot pan.  Cook about 5-7 minutes on each side until you get a good dark sear on them.  Remove to a platter and sear off the remainder of the short ribs.

Add a bit more oil to the pan if needed to saute the onions. Add onions and salt.  Cook them stirring often until translucent and the edges are starting to brown, about 8-10 minutes.

Pour in beer.  Using spoon scrape up all the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.  Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, worcestershire sauce, Sriracha, vinegar and liquid smoke.  Taste for seasoning, add ,more salt if needed.  Return the seared short ribs to the broth.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Cover tightly with lid and simmer 2 1/2 - 3 hours.  

If using an oven set temp to 300f and place your covered pot in the oven for the same amount of time.

If you decide to use a crock pot, pour in the braising liquid, add the beef, cover and use low for 6-8 hours.

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