Monday, October 17, 2011

Braised Short Ribs with Cherry Sauce

For the first post on Rock This Onion, I've made a dish that I've been thinking about putting together for a while now, but just never got around to trying; maybe because I didnt really do very much braising during the summer months.  It is based on a dish that I've grown up with and have eaten a million times: Kibbe Cherry.  Check out for a more traditional recipe, but here, I've taken the traditional Syrian sauce and merged it with some not so traditional short ribs, served it over mashed potatoes and garnished it with a little torn mint.  This dish came out better that I expected.  The short ribs were super tender and the sauce was a little tangy and a little sweet which was balanced by the mashed potatoes.  The mint did a nice job of cutting through the richness of the meat and sauce.  Some chopped scallions over the top might be a nice addition to add even a little more freshness to cut that richness because,'s a pretty rich dish which makes it very satisfying now that it's getting cold out.

6 short ribs on the bone.  These were cut flanken style and the meat completely fell off the bone after braising.  Next time, I'm thinking about having the butcher cut the short ribs the other way and serving them on the bone, like a lollypop. I believe some people call it "English Style."

Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2-3/4 bottle of dry red wine
2 carrots - cut into big chunks
2 celery stalks - cut into big chunks
2 onions- medium-fine dice
4 cloves of garlic smashed
2 bay leaves
2 cans of pitted dark sweet cherries
1/2 cup of Oot (AKA Tamarind Paste, Tamarindo, Tamarindi)- can be found in middle eastern markets
Fresh Mint
  1. Season all sides of the short ribs with salt and pepper
  2. Brown all sides of the meat in a dutch oven in olive oil
  3. Remove browned short ribs from the pot, toss in 1 of the chopped onions and the garlic, adding more olive oil if needed.
  4. Add the celery and carrots and soften for a few minutes
  5. Add short ribs back to the pot and cover with wine and some water, add bay leaves, cover and simmer until the meat is tender- about 2 hours
  6. Remove the meat from the pot once they are tender
  7. In a separate pot, saute the rest of the onions, once they are translucent and soft, strain the short rib cooking liquid into the pot, add the cherries and oot and simmer till slightly reduced and thickened and is a nice sauce consistency
Serve the short ribs with mashed potatoes, cous cous or rice, top with the sauce and garnish with some torn mint leaves.  
If you're looking for a little contrasting texture, try topping it with some pomegranate seeds or toasted pine nuts (or both!).

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