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Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Braised Boneless Short Ribs And Root Vegetables In A Red Wine Reduction Over Cheddar Grits

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This has to be one of the coldest days we’ve had in Orlando in a really long time, so I needed to bring out the big guns for dinner tonight. Steve’s been working on roofs all day and I know he’d want a comforting dish to warm him up. I went to our local Farmers’ Market and decided on short ribs. They offer boneless short ribs which I’ve never seen anywhere else before, so I bought them.

The name of my dish, Braised Short Ribs With Root Vegetables In A Red Wine Reduction Over Cheddar Grits sounds super fancy but really it’s not.

I should tell you that our local Farmers’ Market is called Freshfields Farm. I posted a link at the bottom of this post in case you’d like to click and visit.

I definitely needed good white cheddar for my grits, and Freshfields Farm also offers a variety of cheeses, so this worked out perfectly.

Next, I was onto the produce side of Freshfields Farm to check out the root vegetables available for my dish tonight. I found a beautiful butternut squash and some leaf top carrots. Those are going to be perfect for my Braised Boneless Short Ribs.

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To start this dish, the vegetables need to be prepped. It’s important that they all be approximately the same size so they cook evenly. Besides the butternut squash, carrots, onions, and minced garlic using a food processor purèe the Piquillo peppers.

This is what the boneless short ribs look like. You can see they have great marbling throughout the meat, which will make for a tender and flavorful dish.

Instead of browning the meat off in batches, in my Dutch oven, I’m going to sear the meat all at one time by roasting the short ribs in the oven at a very high temperature. I love this method instead of browning them off in batches on top of the stove. Also, I can start cooking the vegetables off on top of the stove while the meat is searing.

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Be sure to keep checking their progress until they look like the picture above.

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On the stove top, start softening the vegetables in the Dutch oven. It’s really important to season each layer as you go.  I’ll show the total amount of Kosher salt and pepper in the ingredients list.

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For the liquids, first, add the Cabernet Sauvignon to deglaze the pot. Using a wooden spoon to scrape all the bits off the bottom of the pot. After the wine has reduced, add the beef consomme and beef broth.

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Adjust the oven temperature to 325-degrees F.

Remove the short ribs from the oven.

Add the seared short ribs and their juices (the juice is extra flavor) to the pot with the vegetables.  Bring all this up to a boil then reduce to a simmer and place into the oven for 2-1/2- 2-3/4 hours. The short ribs will be fully cooked and fork tender.

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Carefully remove the short ribs from the oven. Turn the oven temperature to 350-degrees F. Carefully remove the short ribs from the pot and set onto a plate.

In a small bowl make a *slurry. Add the *slurry to the pot. Bring the sauce back up to a boil. Stirring everything continuously until the sauce thickens and coats the back of a wooden spoon. You want it to be like a loose gravy, so when you ladle it over the cheese grits, the sauce will cling to the veggies and soak into the grits.

At this point, add the meat back into the pot and place the lid on. Set the pot on a back burner on very low or warm if that setting is available on your stove.

Next, onto making the cheddar grits.

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Adjust oven temperature to 350-degrees F.
In a large saucepot, I add heavy cream and water. Bring up to a boil. Add 1 teaspoon of Kosher salt. Using a  whisk add the grits. As soon as the liquid is completely absorbed,  remove the grits from the heat and add the unsalted butter. Switch to a wooden spoon, stir until butter is incorporated. Next, added the grated white cheddar, stir to combine.

Next, in a 9 x 11 buttered baking dish, add the cooked grits. spread the grits evenly into the buttered casserole dish. spring white cheddar on top. Cover the casserole dish with foil. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 5-7 minutes or until grits are hot and bubbly.

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Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time For Short Ribs: 2 1/2 to 2 3/4 hours
Cooking Time For Grits: 1 hour
Oven Temp: 325 degrees
Yields: 4-6 servings
Equipment, 6-quart Dutch oven, food processor, 2 rimmed baking sheet pans, 9 x 11 baking dish

Ingredients For Boneless Short Ribs:

3 cups of water
1 cup of heavy cream
1 teaspoon of Kosher salt
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups of shredded white cheddar (reserve 1/2 a cup for the topping)

Directions:
Preheat oven to 450-degrees F.
To start this dish, the vegetables need to be prepped. It’s important that they all be approximately the same size so they cook evenly. Besides the butternut squash, carrots, onions, and minced garlic using a food processor purèe the Piquillo peppers.

In a large mixing bowl, add the short ribs, 1/4 cup olive oil, 2 tablespoons of Kosher salt, 1 tablespoon freshly cracked black pepper. Mix to combine. Lay the marinated short ribs, in one layer, spread out, onto two baking sheets. Roast for 20 minutes. Halfway through the roasting process, flip the short ribs to get a good caramelization on all sides.

Note: Oven temperatures may vary slightly. The 20 minutes roasting time for the short ribs is an approximate time.

In a Dutch oven preheated on medium-high heat, add the olive oil, onions, and carrots. Season with Kosher salt and black pepper. Sautè those for 2-3 minutes. Next, add the diced butternut squash minced garlic, and tomato paste.

Continue cooking adding the remaining Kosher salt and black pepper, stirring occasionally for another 2-3 minutes. Note: It’s important to season each layer as you go. Once the vegetables start to soften, add the purèed Piquillo peppers stirring to combine with the vegetables. Next, add the crushed red pepper flakes, and fresh herbs, stir to combine.

For the liquids, first, add the Cabernet Sauvignon to deglaze the pot. Using a wooden spoon to scrape all the bits off the bottom of the pot. After the wine has reduced by half add the beef consomme and beef broth.

Remove the short ribs from the oven. Turn the oven to 325-degrees F.

Add the short ribs and their juices to the Dutch oven, stir to combine. Bring up to a boil, place the lid on and transfer the pot to the oven. Cook for 2 1/2 to 2 3/4 hours or until the meat is fork tender.

Set oven temperature to 350-degrees F.
Remove the pot from the oven, carefully transfer the short ribs to a dish. Add the premade *slurry to the pot, stir to combine. Bring the sauce back up to a boil until sauce has the consistency of a loose gravy. Turn the heat down to the lowest temperature or a warm setting. Add the meat back into the pot. Place a lid on to keep hot.

Tip: Spray the dull side of the foil with non-stick cooking spray before covering the grits. The will prevent the cheese on top from sticking to the foil.

In a large saucepot, I add heavy cream and water. Bring up to a boil. Add 1 teaspoon of Kosher salt. Using a  whisk add the grits. As soon as the liquid is completely absorbed,  remove the grits from the heat and add the unsalted butter. Switch to a wooden spoon, stir until butter is incorporated. Next, added the grated white cheddar, stir to combine.

Next, in a 9 x 11 buttered baking dish, add the cooked grits. spread the grits evenly into the buttered casserole dish. spring white cheddar on top. Cover the casserole dish with foil. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 5-7 minutes or until grits are hot and bubbly.

To Serve:

*slurry:  For each cup of liquid, you want to thicken, start with 1 tablespoon of cornstarch in a small bowl. Add an equal amount of cold liquid and stir until smooth paste forms. Whisk the slurry into the hot simmering liquid you want to thicken.

 

Freshfields Farm

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Coq Au Vin

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To be honest, I haven’t had the opportunity to be able to travel to France, but I can dream right?. If I did get the opportunity it would be during my favorite season, Autumn. I thought how can I get to experience a taste of Paris then it came to me, Coq au vin, chicken cooked in red wine. It’s a comforting dish that’s perfect when you want something that has all the elements of great French cuisine.

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Whenever you’re cooking something for a long time all the flavors tend to get slightly dull. People way smarter than I figured out how to bring braised dishes back to life, make them pop! They top braised dishes right before serving with what’s called a *Gremolata.

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Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
Yields:  2 to 4 servings
Equipment: 6-quart Dutch oven with a tight-fitting lid, large mixing bowl

Ingredients:
6 to 8 bacon slices, cut into lardons
4 chickens breasts, bone-in, skin on, cut in half
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 medium-size onion, small dice
1 tablespoon of garlic, minced
3 carrots, cut diagonally into 1-inch pieces
1-pint Cremini mushrooms, quartered
8 baby Yukon gold potatoes halved
1 cup unsalted chicken broth
3 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves, chopped
1 cup of Cabernet Sauvignon

Ingredients For Gremolata:
1 cup of Italian flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
zest of 1 lemon
pinch of Kosher salt
pinch of fresh ground black pepper
pinch of crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350-degrees F.
Preheat a Dutch oven on medium-high heat for 3 to 5 minutes until hot. Add the *lardons. When the fat begins to melt reduce the heat to medium. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes. As more fat gathers in the pot reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook for another 2 to 3 minutes. Using a pair of tongs, flip the *lardons and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes. Remove any crisp lardons onto a plate lined with paper towel and move any lardon that needs additional time to the center of the pot to continue cooking until the remaining lardons are all crisp.

Meanwhile, lay the chicken out on paper towels and pat dry. In a large mixing bowl add the all-purpose flour, 2 tablespoons of Kosher salt and 1 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper, whisk to combine. When the bacon is all removed, turn the heat back to medium, dredge the chicken pieces into the seasoned flour, shake off excess flour, brown the chicken pieces in batches in a single layer for around 5 minutes, turning to brown evenly. Remove the chicken to the plate with the bacon (lardons) and continue to brown the remaining pieces, Set aside.

To the pot add olive oil, onions, carrots,  Kosher salt, and freshly ground black pepper, cook over medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onions are lightly browned. Add the garlic, cook for 1 minute more. Put the bacon (lardons) and chicken back into the pot. Add the wine, chicken broth, fresh thyme, fresh rosemary, mushrooms, and potatoes and bring to a simmer. Cover with a lid and place into the oven for 35 to 45 minutes, until the internal temperature of the chicken reads 165-degrees F. and the potatoes are fork tender.

Whenever you’re making a stew or braising some type of meat where it needs to cook for a long time, all the flavors tend to get slightly dull. People much smarter than me figured out how to bring braised dishes back to life, make them pop! They top braised dishes, right before serving, with a *Gremolata.

Directions For The *Gremolata:
Start with lemon zest, garlic, flat-leaf Italian parsley, Kosher salt, black pepper, and crushed red pepper flakes. Place all the ingredients on a cutting board and chop them up together as finely as possible. Place into a bowl. Spoon on top of the finished dish. This way you can stir it in right before you eat. *Gremolata brings all the flavors back to life from any long cooking process.

To Serve:
Ladle the Coq Au Vin into a porcelain serving bowl with a dollop of that amazing Gremolata on top. Alongside, a good loaf of crusty French bread for dipping. You must give this dish a try, it’s so delicious.

*Lardons, also called lardoon or larding, are small 1/4″ strips of fatty bacon used in a wide variety of cuisines.

*Gremolata or Gremonlada is a chopped herb condiment classically made of lemon zest, garlic, and parsley. It’s a traditional accompaniment to many braised dishes., Gremolata is also used as a garnish.

 

 

 

 

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Sunday Gravy

Sunday Gravy (2)

In our house, tomato sauce was referred to as Sunday Gravy.  I remember my mom and nana putting the tomatoes through a food mill. They preferred a strained version of their Sunday Gravy.

Over the years I’ve taken my Nana’s basic recipe and made a few changes. My nana never mixed meat into her sauce. The sauce with the meat was always separate from the tomato sauce that went over the pasta. I prefer my Sunday Gravy to be full of meat. I suppose I’ve started a new tradition.

Sunday Gravy

Sweet Italian Sausage

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours 20 minutes
Total Time: 4 hours 30 minutes
Yields: 6 to 8 servings
Equipment: 6-quart Dutch oven with lid, 8-inch sauté pan with lid, mesh sieve

Ingredients:
1 pound of Sweet Italian sausage (5 links)
1 pound ground sirloin (90% lean 10% fat)
1-28-ounce cans of San Marzano, crushed
1-28-ounce can of San Marzano, whole tomatoes
1 yellow onion, small dice
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 carrot, 1/4 inch dice
1 fresh bay leaf (substitute dried)
2 1/2 cups of unsalted chicken stock
1 tablespoon of brown sugar
1 tablespoon of dried oregano
1 teaspoon of dried thyme
1 pint of cremini mushrooms, quartered (optional)
1 teaspoon of red pepper flakes (optional)
1/4 cup of red wine of your choice (Cabernet Sauvignon)
1 tablespoon of tomato paste
1 tablespoon  of kosher salt
1 teaspoon of black pepper
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1/4 cup of fresh basil

Directions:
Start by dicing the onion, carrot and mincing the garlic. Set those aside before starting the meat.

Place the 5 sausage links into a small sauté pan with 2 cups of unsalted chicken stock and cover. Turn the heat to medium, bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer (low boil) for 15 minutes. Transfer the sausage links to a plate. Drain the fat and liquid from the sauté pan, return the links back to the pan. Turn the heat medium-high and cook the sausage links until they reach golden brown in color, around 3 to 5 minutes per side. Transfer the sausage links to a plate and set aside.

In the same sauté pan, don’t bother removing any of the fat left from the sausage it will flavor the beef, add the ground sirloin. Season with Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. On medium-high heat, sauté the ground beef while breaking up the meat up with a wooden spoon. Once the meat is completely brown, 7 to 10 minutes, remove from the heat, using a mesh sieve drain any fat. Transfer the ground beef to a bowl and set aside.

In a Dutch oven heat olive oil on medium-high heat. Add the onions, Kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper. Sauté the onions until translucent, about 2 minutes. Add crushed red pepper flakes, brown sugar, and tomato paste stirring occasionally. Next, add the carrots, continue cooking for another 3 minutes. Add the mushrooms, minced garlic, dried oregano, bay leaf, and thyme, stir to combine, cooking for another 5 minutes.

Pour in the Cabernet and 1/2 cup of unsalted chicken stock. Bring to a boil reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer. Allow the liquids to reduce by half before adding the meat back into the pot, around 5 minutes.

Finally, add the crushed and the whole peeled tomatoes. Using a pair of kitchen shears cut the whole tomatoes in half. Stir gently and simmer for 3 to 3 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.

After 3 1/2 hours taste for seasoning to see if you need to add a little more salt. Turn off the heat and add chopped fresh basil and stir. The sauce is done put a lid on it and keep warm until pasta is cooked

Cook the pasta of your choice in boiling salted water until al dente. My Nana always told me do not to drown your pasta in sauce, use it as a condiment. You want a little of everything but, you want the Sunday Gravy to compliment the pasta.  It really is so much better this way.

 

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