This recipe calls for braising beef short ribs in the oven. This process takes a few hours but renders you a tender, fall off the bone result that is spectacular. Once they are cooked we will finish them off in a tomato sauce that will go beautifully with pasta.
Beef short ribs are an inexpensive cut of meat because they are so tough. This is why you need to cook these long and slow. You can use beer, red wine or beef stock as the braising liquid for this recipe. Either one will work perfectly fine. However, if you want it to be a real Ragu you should use red wine.
Here is what you are going to need for these beef short ribs ragu:
2 pounds short beef ribs
4 to 6 slices bacon or pancetta – chopped
1 medium yellow onion – chopped
4 garlic cloves – chopped
1 small bell pepper – chopped
1 chili pepper – seeded and chopped (optional)
3 celery stalks – chopped
1 large carrot – peeled and diced
1 – 8 oz. can sliced mushrooms – drained
2 TBS tomato paste
1 – 12 oz. bottle of beer OR red wine OR beef stock
1 handful thyme sprigs
1 cup tomato sauce
16 oz. cooked pasta of choice
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- Heat a Dutch oven or braising pot with some oil.
- Season the ribs, generously, with salt and pepper. Place them in the pot and brown them evenly on both sides. Work in batches if necessary. Work on medium high heat. Set them aside.
- Place the bacon in the pot and cook until crisped. Set it aside.
- Keep the rendered fat in the pot and add the chopped onion. Cook for about 6 to 8 minutes, making sure to scrape all the brown bits from the bottom. Add the garlic, bell pepper, celery, chili pepper, carrot and mushrooms. Mix well and allow cooking for about 5 minutes.
- Add the tomato paste and mix until dissolved. Return the beef and bacon to the pot. Add the braising liquid of choice. Place the thyme in the middle. Bring pot to a boil and remove from heat.
- Cover the meat directly with some parchment paper. Cover the pot. Place the pot in the oven and braise for 2 to 3 hours.
- Remove the pot from the oven. Discard the thyme stems and remove the ribs from the pot. Cool them down and chop into small pieces.
- While the meat is cooling, add the tomato sauce to the pot and mix well. Start simmering the sauce, uncovered. Add the chopped meat and cook for an extra 30 minutes or until sauce thickens.
- Add the cooked pasta to the pot and toss to mix well. Serve with shredded Parmesan cheese.