Braised beef is a quintessential comfort dish to serve on a cold chilly night. Although we don’t eat much beef (and when we do, it’s grass-fed), we really felt like this dish when we were down the Cape with a warm fire crackling, sipping a fine red wine.
Searing the beef first and then slowly braising it is the key to creating delicious soft texture and flavor. Adding a tang of mustard and horseradish helps to offset the richness of the beef. If you’ve never used fresh horseradish, this dish is a perfect one to try it. Freshly shaved horseradish is a treat, and much different than the canned version.
We recommend serving this dish with your favorite mashed potato or soft polenta recipe. It can be done less expensively (while still achieving excellent results) by using a chuck roast.
Beer-braised short ribs
- 3 lbs grass-fed short ribs, or about 6 bone-in-block-cut ribs
- 3 medium-sized onions, sliced with the grain
- 6 slices of dried porcini mushrooms (prep by rinsing in warm water and chopping)
- 2 carrots (prep by peeling and cutting into 2" pieces)
- 2 ribs of celery (prep by cutting into 1 ½” pieces)
- 5 cloves of garlic (prep by peeling and lightly smashing)
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 sprigs of fresh thyme
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ½ cup Dijon mustard
- 2 Tbsp. grainy mustard
- 1 cup beef or chicken stock
- 2 cups Belgium or stout-style beer
- 2 Tbsp. grated fresh horseradish (optional)
- Salt and pepper to your taste
- Preheat the oven to 300°F.
- Salt and pepper the ribs liberally. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in your braising pan at high heat and brown the ribs for about 3-5 minutes on each side. Remove the ribs and discard ½ of the fat in the pan.
- Return to medium heat. Add onions, celery, garlic, bay leaves, mushrooms, carrots and thyme to pan. Cook the vegetables about 4 minutes, until they are softened.
- Add ribs back in pan and then add chicken (or beef) stock and beer. Bring to a simmer.
- Cover braising pan and put it into 300°F oven for 2 hours and 25 minutes.
- While ribs are cooking, mix the two types of mustard together in a bowl.
- When ribs are fork tender (enough to be easily pierced or cut with a fork), pull pan from oven and smear mustard on top of each rib, fully coating them. Let sit for 10 minutes or so. Meanwhile, turn the oven to broil setting.
- Place the pan of ribs and sauce into the oven for 3-5 minutes to get a nice brown glaze. Remove from oven and grate fresh horseradish over the top of each short rib, then serve.