As many of you may know, I am a big fan of short ribs. A few years ago, we had enjoyed dinner at a restaurant in Bar Harbor, ME called Havana. I ordered vanilla infused coffee short-ribs and they were to die for. Since that trip, I have been looking for a repeat of that meal. I've combed the internet for recipes but have not been able to find anything like it. I did have a culinary disaster with Coffee and Chocolate Braised Short Ribs, which we were able to salvage but it was initially dubbed "mocha meat".
I like to cook ribs on Sundays since it takes a few hours, leaving the flavors to sit for a day or two before we finally serve it. I found this recipe on the Food Network called Michael's Coffee Braised Short Ribs and thought I could once again try my hand at coffee flavored short ribs.
This recipe was quick to put together but demands about 4 hours of cook time. I enjoy when I can make these recipes on a Sunday and then use them as meals later in the week. When I finished cooking the ribs, I found them to be a little bland. I was making a tomato sauce the same day and had a can of tomato paste open. I mixed 3 tablespoons of tomato paste into the sauce and that was just what it needed. I'm not sure if the flavor was effected by the strength of the coffee or it just demanded more flavor.
The coffee braised short ribs were a big success. Sadly, no seconds on this recipe and letting it rest for a day or two makes for a flavorful sauce. The polenta was a great "starch" for sopping up the "gravy".
I know it wasn't as good as Havana, but I'm getting closer. If I were smart, I should just e-mail the chef and ask for the recipe and then make the short ribs I'm dying for!
3 pounds of boneless short ribs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup dry white wine
1 cup strong brewed coffee
1 large yellow onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 teaspoons hot or mild chili powder
1 teaspoon dried oregano
3 tablespoons of tomato paste
1 cup of beef broth
Polenta (prepared according to directions)
Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees.
Season the short ribs with salt and pepper, to taste.
Warm the oil in a large dutch oven (we use our Le Creuset) over medium-high heat.
Add the ribs and brown until golden, turning them once, about 8 minutes.
Transfer the ribs to a paper towel-lined plate. Pour the wine and coffee into the dutch oven.
Cook over high heat, scraping up the brown bits on the bottom, until the sauce is reduced by one forth, about 2 to 3 minutes.
Put the ribs, onion, garlic, 2 teaspoons salt, the chili powder and oregano into the pot.
Place the dutch oven, covered, in the oven for 3-1/2 hours.
Uncover and add the tomato paste.
Cook, covered, until the ribs are falling apart, about 45 minutes more.
If the sauce remaining is light, add some beef broth.
Transfer the ribs and sauce to a serving dish and serve.
We served ours over prepared polenta.