Beer Braised Short Ribs

95
Beer Braised Short Ribs
Beer Braised Short Ribs

Short ribs are an underappreciated cut of beef that, when cooked properly, are one of our favorites. They are full of beef flavor, tender, and pair perfectly with several starches – like rice, any potato, polenta…the list is long! So, when that cold front rolls into your neighborhood, it’s time to braise some short ribs – in beer! With Beer Braised Short Ribs, you end up with a super tender, flavorful and juicy dish perfect to serve over polenta or mashed potatoes!

The Best Beer for Braised Short Ribs

Yes, Cooking with Wine is braising in beer today (which we also love). Getting into the fall season, we decided on a pumpkin ale for our braising liquid, but you have many choices.

However, we strongly advise against any hoppy beer, like an IPA or pale ale. Reducing a hoppy beer will concentrate the flavor to the point of having an unpleasant taste. It would be like adding 30 sprigs of rosemary to a dish! Just don’t do it.

How to achieve fall-apart tender beef?

What makes this dish so good? The braise does. Braising requires a good size piece of protein and a liquid. You could do it on the stovetop, but using an oven is much easier and requires little to no attention.

You’ve probably heard the saying “slow and low,” which is a good descriptor for any long cooking method. The low refers to the temperature. So smoking and braising are two of the best examples of slow and low techniques. They are usually applied to tough but flavorful cuts of meat. You wouldn’t treat a brisket like a ribeye and grill it like a steak – it would be horribly chewy. The same goes for short ribs, shanks, and other cuts that are usually sold as “roasts.”

Braising is just a roasting technique that happens to do it with a liquid. We are not boiling here, just covering the beef about 3/4 of the way with the cooking liquid. Doing this for a long time at low heat will break down rigid connective tissue and let the short ribs become fall-apart tender and extremely full of flavor.

The Sauce

One of the best parts about braising is that the liquid becomes the sauce! And it will have so much flavor when it is completed, which is why choosing the proper liquid to braise in is so important. It is also open for various additions if you are in the mood! We kept it simple here, but you could reduce it further and add some cream or even butter if desired for an even richer sauce. Or add some more herbs, a splash of acid (lemon, vinegar, etc.) or even a touch more honey or sugar if you want a sweeter sauce.

The point is to make it taste good, and if you’re serving over mashed potatoes, rice, or polenta, you want the sauce to add flavor to those!

Because we are using short ribs in this recipe, you will end up with a decent amount of fat that you will need to strain out of the final sauce. We describe this in the instructions below.

The perfect side dishes for Beer Braised Short Ribs

Here are a few of our favorite options:

Beer Braised Short Ribs
We love these Beer Braised Short Ribs over our Smoked Gouda and Porcini Mushroom Polenta!

Enjoy!

We hope you enjoy this recipe for Beer Braised Short Ribs! If you give it a try, leave us a comment below or tag us on Instagram @cooking_with_wine!

Beer Braised Short Ribs

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Recipe by Angela and Mark Course: DinnerCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Easy-Moderate
Servings

6

servings
Prep time

30

minutes
Cooking Time

4

hours

Ingredients

  • Ingredients
  • 4 lbs bone-in short ribs

  • 2 Tbsp kosher salt

  • 2 tsp ground black pepper

  • 3 Tbsp grapeseed, canola, or vegetable oil

  • 2 medium carrots- (about 150g), peeled and cut into ½” discs

  • 2 medium stalks of celery (about 150g) cut into ½” pieces

  • 1 medium to large onion about (about 300g) large chopped (1/2”)

  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste

  • 2 Tbsp flour

  • 5 cloves garlic – halved

  • 24 oz brown ale or seasonal ale that is not too hoppy. (*see note at bottom)

  • 2 Tbsp honey

  • Small handful of thyme sprigs (5-7)

  • 4 bay leaves

  • 4-6 parsley stems

  • 8 black peppercorns

  • 1-2 cups beef stock – depending on depth of your pot – just to top of meat

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F
  • Season the short ribs with the salt and pepper. Heat a large Dutch oven (or braising pot) medium to medium-high heat, then add the oil. Add the short ribs, and brown on each side the best that you can. This will take 7-10 minutes, turning often enough to brown as much surface area of the meat as possible. Remove the ribs to a plate.
  • Turn the heat up slightly, and in the same pot, add the carrots, celery, and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent – about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste, flour, and garlic. Cook for another 3 minutes or so, stirring often. There should be some browning on the bottom of the pan.
  • With the heat on medium high or higher, add a small amount (about 4 oz) of the beer and scrape the bottom of the pot to deglaze. Add the rest of the beer and add the honey. Stir the honey in well to combine in the liquid. Then add the thyme, bay leaves, and parsley stems. Stir to combine well. Then return the short ribs to the pot, bone side down, nestling them down amongst the vegetables in one layer. Add the beef stock to bring the liquid just to the top of the meat.
  • Bring the liquid to a boil, then place the pot, covered, in the oven for 3 hours. After 3 hours, remove the lid and continue to cook for another 30 minutes.
  • Remove the pot from the oven, and carefully remove the short ribs. They will be extremely tender and may detach from the bone. Place on a plate, cover and keep warm.
  • Strain the liquid from the pot, removing all solids. The fat will come to the top – skim off as much as you can, then put the liquid into a saucepan over medium-high heat. Reduce the liquid by about 25%, taste for seasoning and add salt if necessary. Serve over the short ribs.

Notes

  • Getting into the fall season, we decided on a pumpkin ale for our braising liquid, but you have many choices. However, we strongly advise against any hoppy beer, like an IPA or pale ale. Reducing a hoppy beer will concentrate the flavor to the point of having an unpleasant taste. It would be like adding 30 sprigs of rosemary to a dish! Just don’t do it.

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