I set out to make braised short ribs and had absolutely no idea what I was going to end up with.
What turned out was one of the most delicious pasta dishes I have ever made. I need to tell you something. It's very important. Ready? Cancel your dinner plans and make a date with this dish. He or she will not let you down.
I've never made braised short ribs before and it was actually pretty easy.
This ingredient shot is incomplete, because like I said I switched up my plan half way through. I was going to make braised short ribs over polenta but the voices told me to make a sauce. Some people have that little voice in their head. My little voice comes from my mouth. From my taste buds to be exact.
Here are our ingredients:
Tomato Paste (not pictured)
Tomato Sauce (not pictured)
Pasta (not pictured)
Parmesan (not pictured)
Parsley (not pictured)
Chop up all of your aromatics. Shallots, garlic, onion, carrots, and celery. This is what gives you that deep, rich flavor that make braised short ribs so deliciously decadent. My mom calls short ribs stew meat but I call them heaven.
Season the short ribs liberally with salt and pepper. Some people dredge the short ribs in flour, which I don't totally understand. This seems like a unnecessary step and I tend to drop flour all over the place whenever I have to use it so for all of your sakes, I just left this step out.
My mom got me this SUPER SWEET slow cooker for Christmas last year. You can put the nonstick insert directly on the stove to brown your meat before beginning the slow cooking process. This thing has seriously changed my life.
Ok so add your olive oil and then put the ribs fat side down and cook over high heat to brown the ribs.
This is what you want to see.
Brown each side and then remove. This process should take you about ten minutes.
Add the aromatics to the olive oil and the beef drippings.
Season with some salt and pepper once the veggies start to cook down a bit.
Put the ribs back into the slow cooker over the veggies.
Now it's time to add our liquid. Add about half a bottle of red wine. I used a Cabernet Sauvignon because it's a full bodied wine. Pinot noir would be too light and wouldn't stand up to the other rich flavors.
Add your chicken stock. Sorry...not sure what happened to the photo here. Either I had a seizure or sneezed. It's hard to tell.
Ok now that everyone is in the pool, I covered the ribs in my slow cooker and let them go night night for four and a half hours on the highest setting.
Yummy. So, you can trim up your short ribs if you want less fat but the fat is what gives the sauce flavor. So, it's up to you. Oh that's good sauce or OMG this is incredible sauce.
Add 2 Cups of the braising liquid, half a can of tomato paste, and a can of tomato sauce.
Let it cook over medium high heat until the sauce begins to thicken. So here's the deal. See that fat on top of the sauce? That's not really ideal. IDEALLY you would let the sauce sit in the fridge over night so you can skim all of the fat that raise to the top. I mentioned this to Charlie and I just couldn't stand to see a grown man cry. So I painstakingly skimmed the top with a ladle until I got most of it out.
I should mention I skimmed the fat AFTER adding the short rib meat.
Cook your pasta per the packages directions. This is galletti pasta. I had never heard of this before until my mother in law, Nancy, told me about it. I call them mini octopus legs and Charlie calls them mini Roman helmets.
So dump the sauce into the pasta in a big bowl so you can really toss everything together.
One thing I learned in Tuscany was to toss the cheese into the pasta OFF the heat. If you add it to the pasta or the sauce on the heat, it won't get all creamy and delicious. Who doesn't want creamy and delicious? I would seriously kill myself if I was lactose intolerant.
Chop up some fresh parsley and sprinkle over the pasta. Also, get a peeler and peel some chunks of parm over the pasta as an additional garnish. This just makes it even more special.
Doesn't this just look amazing?
One thing I like about my pasta bowls besides the fact they are so pretty is that they are HUGE. So, a serving is just a bowl size. So sue me.
The tender, unbelievably flavorful short ribs are just incredible with the al dente pasta.
Serve with some red wine you cooked with....
...and do your best not to eat the entire pound of pasta in one sitting. Stay hungry!
Galletti Pasta with Braised Short Rib Sauce
3 Large Short Ribs
2 Cups Red Wine
4 Cups Beef Broth
1/2 Bunch Celery, chopped
3 Large Carrots, chopped
1 Onion, chopped
3 Garlic Cloves, chopped
1 Shallot, chopped
1/2 Teaspoon Dried Thyme (or 6 fresh sprigs)
2 Tbs Olive Oil
1/2 6 oz Can Tomato Paste
1 14 oz Can Tomato Sauce
1 Pound Pasta (not pictured)
1/2 Cup Freshly Grated Parmesan, more for serving
1/4 Cup Parsley, chopped
Salt and Pepper
Heat the olive oil in a pan. Season each side of ribs and brown on each side over medium high heat. Remove from pan. Add celery, carrots, shallot, onion, and garlic to the pan and saute until veggies become softened, about 5 minutes. Add thyme and salt and pepper. Add ribs back in and add wine and beef stock. If using a slow cooker, cook on highest setting for 4.5-5 hours or until meat become incredibly tender and easily pulls apart. Pull as much meat as you can off the bone and set aside. In a pan, combine 2 cups of the braising liquid, the tomato paste, braised short rib meat and sauce. Simmer until sauce begins to thicken. This will take about 15-20 minutes. Cook pasta to packages instructions and toss the sauce and the pasta together. Toss in the Parmesan and parsley. Add additional Parmesan on top before serving and enjoy. *If not using a slow cooker, you can cook the short ribs in an oven save dish with lid on 375 degrees for 3-4 hours or until tender.