Braised Short Ribs

Braised Short Ribs for Two via applestoziti.com

If you’ve never tried short ribs before… it’s time to take the plunge. They will take you into slow-cooked bliss and you’ll never look back. I feel it’s essential to my well being to have these at least a few times every year.

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C is for Coffee Braised Short Ribs

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Short ribs + slow cooker meal… yes please!

 

This requires a bit of work up front but once it’s in the slow cooker you’re free!

Short ribs are definitely a special occasion meal for us, but they are so full of flavor that it’s worth splurging for from time to time (figure about $5/ pound of meat… 3 pounds feeds 4-6 people). We used 9 pounds for the crowd we were feeding and it worked out just about right for 12 adults and 4 little kiddos. It really depends who’s eating. Hungry eaters = 3/4 pound per person. Lighter eaters = 1/2 pound per person. 🙂

The first question my guest asked me was: What is a SHORT rib anyway? (They thought it sounded kind of rude) 🙂

Short ribs are usually taken from the chuck cut of beef (you’ve probably heard of a “chuck roast”). Chuck is taken from between the neck and shoulder blade of the cow. Usually chuck is an inexpensive cut for a roast or steaks. When the chuck cut is used for short ribs it is cut into small rectangles or squares, each of which contain a piece of the rib bone (hence the “rib” portion of “short ribs”). They MUST be cooked slowly as they are a very tough cut of meat. They end up being fall-apart tender if you do it right and they are SUPER flavorful as they have a good layer of fat in them. You can see an uncooked picture of them below!

Doing some prep really helps out here. Take your short ribs out of the fridge and put them on a large sheet of foil for easy clean up. They need to sit for about 20-25 minutes to take the chill off before you sear them. Sear just means browning meat quickly over high heat. Searing keeps all the juices inside of the meat. Usually the meat is finished off at a lower temperature after the searing is done.

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C is for Carrots? Corn? Cocoa? Cranberries?… Christmas!?

I had a hard time picking out a “C” ingredient but I have finally come to a decision. We LOVE this ingredient… my husband and I… even my 2 year old daughter seems to like it. She likes it plain too… no sugar or anything else needed. She likes it black.

Do you know what it is now? 🙂  C is for Coffee!

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Both my husband and I worked at Starbucks in college. When we started there I’m pretty sure neither of us had really had anything coffee-like from there besides a Caramel Frappuccino. In Chicago I would make myself “steamers” (just hot milk and syrup) to stay warm. If you don’t like coffee you should try it. My favorite flavor to add to the steamed milk was hazelnut. Soon after starting work there I “graduated” to white chocolate mochas… pretty much the sweetest, least coffee-like espresso drink on the menu. My husband was the same: white mochas. Now he drinks black coffee or espresso shots over ice and my “poison” of choice is a Grande Americano (black). I like to order a cappuccino from time to time, but it’s hard to find a barista who steams the foam the correct way. I think it’s the hardest drink to make but one of the yummiest if it’s done right. It’s hard to mess up an Americano (just espresso shots and water). I’m officially addicted.

So, Coffee? Does this mean all desserts? Nope! I have short ribs and bone-in pork chops in the line-up and probably one other main course recipe to come! We’ve already tried out the short ribs and I’m SUPER excited to post them. It’s a crock pot recipe so you have work on the front end but then you can just relax! Woohoo!

Don’t worry… there will be desserts too! I have been drooling over them for days now. The Espresso Chocolate Mousse… it’s to die for. AND… it’s SO easy.

If you’re a coffee-lover I bet you’re excited! If not, we’ll convert you 🙂

Just to get you started: click here to learn how to brew the PERFECT cup of coffee in your own home! There’s something surprising you add to the coffee grounds to help take away any bitterness! WHO KNEW?!

Now, I want to know what your drink of choice is at Starbucks (or at whatever coffee shop you enjoy!) Whether or not it has coffee in it… leave a comment and let me know!

Happy Eating!