Short Ribs – A Battle

A couple weeks back I made a Braised Short Ribs recipe by Anne Burrell of Food Network. The recipe was a bit misleading on the prep time, which had irked me when I was making it. I had already suspected that it was off, since I have made short ribs before and knew that the prep time would be longer than 30 minutes (the recipe say that total time is 3 hours and 3 minutes, and the stew is in the oven for 3 hours). Anyway, the recipe turned out interesting and everyone liked it. The thing that I didn’t love about this recipe was that all of the veggies were pureed into a paste before being added to the pot. The final product was nice though, I just thought it a bit of a pain.

So just to compare, I made this version yesterday out of Sunset Magazine October 2007 Paprika Short-Rib Beef Stew. This was not great. First off, they had you season the ribs in a flour mixture before browning. This made a huge mess in the pot, as the flour began to burn over time as the batches of ribs went in. The final product had no sign of paprika being used. It was really greasy to boot. I did like the potatoes being added at the end, but since I have usually served ribs over a puree (cauliflower, potato, parsnip, etc.) or egg noodles, I found this to be unnecessary. As my husband put it “This wasn’t anything special.”

Last entry, or technically first for us, is the recipe that had spurred this whole thing on. We made this about a month ago, just as the weather started to turn. My kids LOVE short-ribs! This is a recipe from my mother for Hungarian Short-Ribs. I hope you enjoy.

Hungarian Short-Ribs
4 lbs bone-in short-ribs
2 T. cooking oil
2 medium onions, sliced
2 cups, tomato sauce
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
2 cups water
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ cup vinegar
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. dry mustard
1 package egg noodles

In a Dutch oven over medium heat, brown the meat in oil on all sides. Cook in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan. Add meat back to pot and add onions. Blend together tomato sauce, 1 cup of water, brown sugar, vinegar, salt, dry mustard, and Worcestershire sauce. Pour over meat. Cover and simmer for 2 – 2 ½ hours (I put mine in the oven at 350 degrees for the same amount of time). Skim off the fat. Add the egg noodles and 2nd cup of water. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for 15-20 minutes, or until noodles are tender.

We found this version to be a bit sweet. I would recommend adding garlic, more Worcestershire sauce and maybe some red wine. I would also reduce the amount of sugar used.

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