Tuesday, February 8, 2011


I have a love affair with short ribs and seek out restaurants with this dish on the menu. I've made short ribs any number of times and have been pleased with the results, but none have equaled those I get out and this bothers and perplexes me. I had it in mind to try Michael Symon's recipe which Kim of Stirring the Pot had featured a while back. And then as I was browsing the Food Network site to find a Giada dish to try, I happened upon her penne with braised short ribs. Giada's recipe is here. Following is my very slightly amended version.

Serves 4 - 6
4 lbs beef short ribs
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1/8 cup olive oil (I halved Giada's recommendation)
1 large onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
1 can San Marzano tomatoes, liquid drained, chopped
1 cup red wine (I used a Sangiovese)
3 tbs Dijon mustard
2 cups low-sodium beef broth
1 lb tagliatelle (I just love this pasta, though I'm sure Giada's tasted great with penne)
1/4 cup freshly grated pecorino romano (I'm not into parmesan)
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley (optional)

Place an oven rack in lower third of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Season the ribs with salt and pepper. In a large, heavy-bottomed Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium-high heat. In batches, add the ribs and brown on all sides, 8-10 minutes. Remove the ribs and set aside. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, for 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes, wine, and mustard. Bring the mixture to a boil and scrape up the brown bits that cling to the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP; IT'S THE MONEYMAKER. Return the ribs to the pan and add the beef broth. Cover the pan and place in the oven for 2 1/2 hours, until the meat is so tender it falls from the bone.

Remove the ribs from the cooking liquid. Using a large spoon or a gravy separator, remove excess fat from the sauce. There will be lots of fat. An alternative is to make the dish the day before, refrigerate the sauce separately, and lift off the congealed fat. However you do it, you want to be sure to remove the fat. Giada glides over this step, but the sauce would be way too greasy otherwise. Transfer the liquid to the bowl of a food processor or use an immersion blender to process until the mixture is smooth. Pour the sauce into a saucepan and keep warm over low heat.

Remove the meat from the bones and use two forks to shred it into small pieces. Stir the shredded meat into the sauce and season to taste.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a vigorous boil. Add the pasta and cook to the al dente stage. Drain the pasta and place in a large bowl. Use a slotted spoon to remove the meat from the sauce and add to the pasta. Pour 1 cup of sauce over the pasta and toss well. Use additional sauce as you like. Be sure to top with the grated cheese before serving.
Pictures may be worth a thousand words, but no pictures can do justice to this dish. Someone eavesdropping on our dinner conversation would have thought we were in the throes of passion...and we were. We were passionately devouring the incredible meat and sauce. The meat literally fell away from the bones on its own. The reduced sauce held the sweetness of the tomatoes juxtaposed against the brine of the mustard and the acidity of the wine. Leftovers were as delicious over mashed potatoes as they were over the tagliatelle. This is not my revered CIA recipe, but it is every bit as good, just different. The prep time is minimal, but the low and slow in the oven filled the house with the most savoury aromas. We were almost foaming at the mouth in anticipation and we were not disappointed. If I could have just 3 meals to eat for the rest of my life, this would be one of them.

I'm sending this to I Heart Cooking Clubs for their "That's Amore" dish because we both loved the dish and want to share the love. So head on over to see what you can add to this meal to put it over the top.


  1. this doesnt look like enough for me would have to have the plate over flowing :) wonderful and hearty plate of goodness here love it!

  2. That sounds wonderful!Comforting and hearty!

  3. WOW! I have saved this very same recipe from Kim's post AND NOW your post. It must be indescribable! Thasnks for sharing! Now following you from I Heart Cooking Club's introduction of you to me. I can't wait to read more! Ciao!

  4. Now that is amore!
    Love the braised short ribs and you are right, tagliatelle is much sexier than penne. Delicious!

  5. OMG, I was cracking up on your tastes notes! I totally can appreciate everything you said, you convinced me, my mouth is watering now. The name of your blog is so fitting Arlene!

  6. I'm definitely going to have to add these short ribs to my to-do list since you've given them such a glowing review! I loved seeing Dijon mustard in the recipe. Sounds like a delicious addition. This is such a fitting post for That's Amore. So glad you and DSO enjoyed these. They do look mouth-watering.

    Thanks for the mention:)

  7. I could easily have a love affair with this too.. we love braised ribs and your dish looks just scrumptious..I can smell it from here! ;)

  8. Oh yum! I can see how this dish would be "passionately devoured!" LOL!

  9. I so love braised short ribs but usually just order them out too. This dish looks amazing--total amore in my book! ;-)

  10. That looks fantastic....comfort food to the nth!

  11. Oh yum - this looks wonderful. I've never actually cooked short ribs, but I so need to try this. Thanks for sharing it.
    Sue :-)

  12. This looks so good Arlene! I'm making curry chicken and cauiflower in a crock pot tonight per my husband's request, but I'll save this recipe for his birthday!


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