October 5, 2008

Low & Slow... The Braise

When you find yourself at home on a cool, crisp fall day what better way to prepare dinner than to let it cook slowly all day. The scent of the flavors coming together while you relax with your family will have your mouth watering throughout the afternoon. Some people will pull out the crockpot or slow cooker, but I've become a fan of braising. You see, I was lucky enough to receive a Le Crueset French oven for my birthday last summer and had to wait ever-so-patiently for the weather to cool down so that I could begin experimenting with braising.

My interest in braising started last winter. I picked up a couple of cookbooks from the library to gather an understanding of what exactly this technique was and what types of dishes can be prepared in this way. What I found out was that many of the recipes were reminiscent of the comfort foods so many people grew up with, such as stew or chicken and dumplings.

To break in my beautiful new red pot, I decided that Braised Short Ribs would be a nice way to start. The recipe called for browning the meat, then removing it while the other ingredients were added to cook for a bit and come up to a boil. Then the meat was added back in so that the slow blending of flavors could begin and continue for the next hour. The scent of this dish was truly mouth-watering. The wine I used was a merlot and it married to the other flavors beautifully.

This is a perfect recipe to share with the Low and Slow blogging event over at The Constables' Larder. So, be sure to head over to visit after the submission deadline (October 15) to see what other fantastic slow cooked meals might make your mouth water.

braised short ribs 2

The dish was considered delicious by My Youngest and myself... while My Husband and My Oldest were less impressed by it. You can't please everyone, but if I can please at least half of the people at my dinner table, I'm happy.

braised short ribs 1

Braised Short Ribs
Adapted from: Gourmet, October 1995

Serves 6 to 8.

3 pounds beef short ribs, cut into 1-rib pieces
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
3/4 cup dry red wine
14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes including liquid
3/4 cup beef broth
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crumbled
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 ounces pearl onions (about 1 cups), blanched in boiling water 2 minutes and peeled

Pat short ribs dry and season with salt and pepper. In a large pot or dutch oven (at least 6 quarts) heat oil over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking and brown ribs in batches, transferring with tongs to a large bowl.

Add chopped onions to kettle and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until golden - about 5-7 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add wine, tomatoes, broth, Worcestershire sauce, rosemary, and salt and bring to a boil. Add ribs including any juices that have accumulated and simmer, covered, 30 minutes.

Add pearl onions, stirring and pushing down to make sure they are covered by liquid, and simmer, covered, 1 hour, or until meat is tender. Transfer meat and pearl onions with a slotted spoon to a large bowl. Boil braising liquid, stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened and reduced to about 4 cups.

Return meat and onions to pot and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until heated through.

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Jaime said...

i'm not a big fan of short ribs myself, but those do look tasty. i agree - you can't please everyone so i still think you did a great job :)

Sara said...

I love short ribs, I have to say, I'm glad braising weather is back!

Mary said...

I love short ribs and these look especially delicious. I envy you that pan. Your recipe sounds great.

Prudy said...

Slow and low sounds perfect for this weather. What a fantastic meal.

Deborah said...

I'm so jealous! I really want a Le Crueset. And this meal sounds perfect!

Maria said...

A Le Creuset is on my wish list! Lucky you!

Candy said...

Oh I bet your house smelled great! That looks wonderful.

That Girl said...

short ribs are the only thing I actually braise. But I don't have a fancy schmancy french oven.

Jenny said...

Ah, now this sounds nice and comforting for fall and winter coming!!

1215656559s20768 said...

This looks fantastic with some wonderful flavor combinations. I just wish the weather was cool and crisp here.

Patsyk said...

Yes, I am a bit spoiled as my husband has been encouraging my cooking obsession this past year. ;)

Even though I love summer, I do look forward to it getting a bit cooler so I can get back to baking, brasiing, roasting and everything else that heats up my kitchen!

Thank you for all the kind comments!

Kevin said...

Braising is one of my favorite ways of cooking. It is great that you can take that tough piece of meat and turn it into a super tender and tasty piece.

Patsyk said...

Kevin - nice to see you back from your vacation!

Braising fascinates me because of how it can take a tough piece of meat and make it so tender and mouth-watering!

Haley said...

My mouth is watering just reading about this! Delicious! I'll have to settle for my crock pot, but this is definitely going on my "to try" list!

We would love to feature your braised short ribs on our blog and on the Demy- the first and only digital recipe reader! If interested email me at haleyglasco@gmail.com

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