What is braising?
Braising is a combination cooking method where you first sear the food with a dry heat and then slowly cook it for a long period of time in a wet heat, usually a braising liquid with a lid to trap in the heat. Tough cuts of meat that require long cooking times to reach a tender, pleasant texture are great candidates for braising.
When you use the slow cooker, you are often braising stuff. If I wrote the book on slow cooking (no really I did!), why am I braising it the old fashioned way? Because it tastes different. The slow cooker is all about convenience. I love it. I use it frequently. But there’s something about braising a piece of meat traditionally that just tastes good. Maybe because it involves extra work. You know, things taste better when they are made with love.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not going to knock the slow cooker. I love it. But if you want to spend a little extra time (or you are late on getting something in the slow cooker and dinner is in less than 8 hours…), it’s extra delicious!
How do you make braised short ribs?
Short ribs can be braised whether they are boneless or bone-in. Season and sear the meat over a high heat. Next, immerse the short ribs either partially or fully in a flavorful liquid in an oven safe pan. Cover and cook for a long period of time (usually about two and a half hours), until the meat is tender.
In this recipe the braising liquid is simple, but flavorful. The basis is a combination of sautéed onion and garlic. Beef broth and worcestershire sauce is added. The real kicker in this recipe is one fresh sprig of rosemary. It may seem simple, but the long cooking time will infuse the rosemary flavor throughout the liquid and the meat. Just be warned, the smell in your house will make you drool!
Serving Suggestions: Braised beef short ribs are often served up with mashed potatoes. The braising liquid can easily be turned into a gravy, if desired. Other classic accompaniments are a creamy polenta, or roasted vegetables.
Don’t let those delicious juices go to waste! Remove the meat and pour the juices into a sauce pan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until sauce reduces (about 15 minutes). You’ll have a delicious sauce. For a smooth sauce you’d want to strain it first.
Or make it into a gravy. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a saucepan. Add in 2 tablespoons of flour and whisk together into a paste. Pour in strained juices and heat over medium-high heat until thickened. If your juices are straight from the oven and still piping hot this will only take a minute or two.
Watch the video below where I walk you through every step of this recipe. I’ve always got you covered with a visual in my very own cooking show. Be sure to check it out!