Finish a Braise

Beef Short Ribs Braised in Chestnut Beer


Serves 8 to 10 people

For the Short Ribs

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

5 pounds boneless beef short ribs, cut into eight to ten (2 x 4-inch) pieces

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

½ cup chestnut flour

4 carrots, peeled and chopped into ¼-inch dice

3 Spanish onions, chopped into ½-inch dice

4 celery stalks, chopped into 1-inch pieces

12 garlic cloves

Two 12-ounce bottles chestnut beer

2 cups basic tomato sauce

2 cups stock

1 bunch fresh thyme sprigs

1 bunch fresh rosemary sprigs, tied together with the thyme with kitchen twine


For the Gremolata

Leaves from 1 bunch fresh Italian parsley

Zest of 2 lemons, removed with a vegetable peeler and cut into julienne strips

4 ounces fresh horseradish, grated


Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F.


In a large, heavy-bottomed ovenproof skillet or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over high heat until smoking. Season the short ribs with plenty of kosher salt and pepper, and dredge them in the chestnut flour, shaking off the excess. Place them, 5 at a time, in the hot oil and sear until deep brown on all sides, about 15 minutes per batch. Transfer the short ribs to a plate and set aside.


Add the carrots, onions, celery, and garlic to the skillet and cook over high heat until browned and softened, 6 to 7 minutes. Season the vegetables with salt and pepper, and stir in the chestnut beer, tomato sauce, chicken stock, and herb bundle. Scrape the bottom of the skillet with a wooden spoon to dislodge the brown bits, and bring the mixture to a boil. Return the short ribs to the skillet, cover, and place it in the oven. Cook for 2 hours.


Uncover the skillet and continue to cook for 30 minutes, or until the meat is fork-tender. Remove from the oven and use a ladle or a kitchen spoon to skim the fat from the braising liquid.


To make the gremolata, combine the parsley, lemon zest, and horseradish in a small bowl, and toss loosely by hand.


To serve, place the skillet on a cutting board or trivet on the table, and serve the gremolata on the side.


Recipe courtesy of Molto Batali (ecco 2011)

See the recipe

How-To Tuesdays

Finish a Braise

Once you pull your braise out of the oven, you’ll need to know the next steps.  Finish a braise like a chef with the expert guidance of Chad Colby, Executive Chef at Chi Spacca.  First tip: baste the heck out of it!!


Check out Chef Chad Colby of Chi Spacca’s stellar recipe, Lamb Braise with Orange, Olive and Mint

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