short rib of beef
( 5 to 7 pounds)
fresh coarse ground black pepper
carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
onion, roughly chopped
shallots, peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick
garlic cloves, peeled and halved
full-bodied wine, such as cabernet sauvignon
( veal stock is really best but you can substitute good homemade beef stock)
- Preheat the oven to 325°F
- Bind each rib with cotton kitchen twine. Place the rosemary, thyme, and bay leaf between the two celery halves and bind with kitchen twine.
- Season the short ribs with 2 teaspoons of the salt and the pepper.
- Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven over a high flame until it smokes.
- In two batches, brown the short ribs well on both sides, about 3 minutes per side, pouring off all but 3 tablespoons of oil between batches.
- Remove the ribs and set aside when done.
- Lower the flame to medium, and add the carrots, onion, shallots, and garlic to the pot and saute for 5 minutes, until the onion is soft and light brown.
- Stir in the tomato paste and cook for 2 minutes.
- Add the flour and stir well to combine. Add the port, red wine, and the celery-herb bundle.
- Raise the flame to high and cook until the liquid is reduced by a third, about 20 minutes.
- Return the ribs to the pot (they will stack into two layers).
- Add the stock and the remaining 1 teaspoon of salt; if the stock doesn’t cover the ribs by at least 1 inch, add water up to that level.
- Bring to a gentle simmer, cover, transfer to the preheated oven, and cook for 3 hours. Visit the pot occasionally and stir the ribs, bringing the ones on the bottom up to the top -- they’re done when the meat is fork tender and falling off the bone.
- Transfer the ribs to a large platter and remove the strings.
- Skim any fat from the surface of the sauce, and then strain through a sieve into a medium saucepan.
- Discard the solids.
- Over medium heat, bring the sauce to a strong simmer and reduce the liquid until slightly less then half (4 cups) remains, about 1 hour.
- Return the ribs to the pot, simmer for 10 minutes to reheat, and serve.