The main courses were all nice and hearty dishes. The main meat was a slow braised short ribs over risotto.
– trim fat off the top, but leave on the bone, salt and pepper
– bone side down in a roasting pan 400 degree oven for about an hour, or until nicely browned
– remove pan from oven, ribs from pan, pour of all of the grease
– return ribs to pan. Zinfandel wine (2 bottles) + stock (I used oxtail, but chicken also works) + some large carrot pieces. Liquid about 1/2-3/4 up the ribs. Heat pans until liquid is to a boil.
– cover pans (we used foil because the pans were huge, and we were actually using two pans) return to oven at 325-350.
– braise for 2-3 hours or until the ribs are tender (these were 2.5, I think). You can start checking the ribs at 2 hours
– remove foil (careful!) and let ribs cool for a bit in the liquid
– remove ribs into a small pan and cover well with foil (at this point it was 4 o’clock or so, so we just left this covered pan out). They will most likely fall off the bone and this point, and that’s fine.
– strain liquid, cool, skim fat (I didn’t, because I was too
disorganized. It tasted fine, but probably would have been better if
– I had.
To re-heat/serve (Start at least an hour in advance, the reducing will
take a long time).
– reduce liquid well until it starts to become a bit thick (I think we
had maybe two cups remaining after reducing from a starting point of two
bottles of wine)
– return ribs (still in their small pan, still covered) to a 350 degree oven to warm up
– toss ribs in sauce, or spoon over, or what have you.
– we made a basic saffron risotto with chicken stock and cheese, which I think is an excellent foil for the sauce.