Mrs. Regueiro's Plate: Pumpkin Beer Braised Short Ribs

Monday, November 2, 2009

Pumpkin Beer Braised Short Ribs

Comfort gourmet food would best sum up this dish. Eric and I had visited this amazing new restaurant, Haven Gastropub. It's a new bar in Downtown Orange that specializes in good food, great beer & awesome customer service. They are just Yelp-tastic & fabulous! As crazy as it sounds, I even added them as my friends on facebook - how else would I have found out about Candied Bacon Ice cream over Chocolate brownies. I'd have a love affair with bacon...but that's a whole new post. Anywho, Eric had ordered beer braised short ribs with a reduction of Firestone Union Jack IPA. My husband was kind enough to let me have a bite or two, I was in heaven. Tender, juicy pieces of rib with a tangy bite to it, like falling off the bone tender.

My modified version, I planned to combine the basic ingredients and add a little bit of Ina Garten in the mix. The addition of the fennel, leeks & pumpkin beer to the recipe heightened it to fall flavors, and very reminiscent of Thanksgiving. Overall, I was pleased with my results, sad to have used my last pumpkin beer bottle, and happily satisfied with the juicy, tender, and comforting dish. This is my tribute to Haven Gastropub, and I'm dying to stop by again to try that Candied Bacon Ice cream. Please Eric?

Pumpkin Beer Braised Short Ribs
Adapted from Best American Recipes & Barefoot Contessa

4 pounds meaty bone in short ribs
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
2 large onions, cut into thick rings
2 cups baby carrots
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 bottle of Pumpkin beer (Or your choice of ale or beer)
1 15 ounce can crushed tomatoes
2 cups of beef stock
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 small fennel, fronds, stems, and core removed, large-diced
1 leek, cleaned and large-diced, white part only
Fresh rosemary sprigs
Fresh thyme sprigs

1. Season ribs all over with salt and pepper and set aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches so you don't crowd the pan, brown the ribs on all sides, turning with tongs, 7 to 10 minutes per batch. As ribs are browned, place in a large Dutch oven.
3. Add remaining 1 tablespoon fat to skillet if needed. Lower heat to medium and sauté the onions for 7 to 10 minutes or until browned, stirring frequently and watching to make sure they don't burn. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute longer. Add carrots, fennel & leek and sauté 4 to 5 minutes. Add the beer, beef stock, tomatoes, mustard and freshly chopped herbs. Increase heat to high and simmer for 1 minute to blend flavors. Pour tomato mixture over short ribs and mix thoroughly. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Bake the ribs, covered, for 2 hours or until the meat is very tender, turning the ribs every 45 minutes. (Add more beer if the liquid cooks away.) Carefully remove the short ribs from the pot and set aside. *Puree the sauce with an immersion blender for a more uniform liquid.* Garnish with frond from fennel.

Review: If you have leftovers, use the leftover sauce for a pasta dish. An easy recipe to prepare using your dutch oven, it reminds me of Osso Bucco. I give the 3 S's = Simple, succulent & savory. Amazing.
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