Red Wine Braised Short Ribs prepared in the oven are a perfect dinner party recipe because most of the work can be done ahead of time – Leaving you free to enjoy the night.
If I had to pick a perfect meal to make for company it would be red wine braised short ribs. These slow braised beef short ribs can either be prepared a day ahead, or the day of, and all of the work is done hours before dinner time, leaving you plenty of time to be social with your guests and enjoy a glass of wine when they arrive. Not only that, but they’re impressive too! Falling off the bone tender meat cooked in red wine that results in a beautiful, silky, rich gravy. The short ribs can be served alongside buttered noodles, mashed potatoes or creamy polenta with a spoonful of the gravy on top. Round off the meal with a green salad or some glazed carrots and you’re set for the night.
I think that dinner at home with friends is so much fun. Cooking always brings an element of entertainment and who doesn’t like hanging out in the kitchen? It seems that it’s always the gathering spot no matter the occasion. But, if you’re the one doing the cooking, I highly suggest that you go easy on yourself and plan a meal where you can do most of the work ahead of time. That’s why these red wine braised short ribs are so great. I like to prepare them the night before. That way you can pop them into the fridge overnight and let the fats solidify. The next day, scrape off that layer and discard it, then simply reheat your ribs on the stovetop when you’re ready to serve.
Of course, no dinner party is complete without a few good bottles of wine… And these red wine braised short ribs are just begging to be paired with big bold reds like a Cabernet Sauvignon, Cab Franc or Merlot. When I think of those varietals, the first place that comes to mind is Walla Walla. There are so many amazing and complex red wines coming out of that region that I always have a hard time picking a favorite… So I’ll generally open up at least two bottles with dinner so that we can all sample and choose which one we like best paired with the short ribs.
Red Wine Braised Short Ribs
- 6 bone-in beef short ribs about 5 3/4 pounds
- 1 onion
- 2 ribs celery cut into ½-inch pieces
- 2 carrots peeled and cut into ½-inch pieces
- 2 cloves garlic smashed
- 2 6 oz cans tomato paste
- 2-3 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- 2 ½ cups dry red wine
- 1 bunch fresh thyme tied with kitchen string
- 2 bay leaves
- Kosher salt
- Coarse ground black pepper
- Olive oil
- 4 cups milk
- 4 cups water
- 2 cups polenta
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/3 cup Parmesan grated
- Dry the ribs thoroughly with paper towels and season generously with salt and pepper. Coat the bottom of an oven-safe heavy pot or dutch oven with olive oil and heat over high heat. Once the oil is shimmering, add the short ribs and brown on all sides, approximately 2-3 minutes per side. The pot should not be overcrowded – If necessary, cook the ribs in batches.
- While the short ribs are browning, preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Puree all vegetables and garlic in a food processor or blender until finely chopped into a thick paste.
- Once browned, remove the ribs to a plate and tent with foil to keep warm. Drain the fat from the pot and add a fresh coating of oil. Add the pureed vegetables and season generously with salt. Brown over high heat, without stirring, for 5 to 7 minutes. Add the tomato paste, stir, and let the vegetables brown for an additional 3 to 5 minutes. Add the wine and, using a wooden spoon, scrape any bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir occasionally, letting this mixture reduce by half.
- Once reduced, return the short ribs and any accumulated juices to the pot along with enough water to almost cover the meat. Add the thyme and bay leaves. Cover your pot and place it in the hot oven. Allow to cook for 3 hours, checking periodically and adding more water if needed. Turn the ribs over halfway through the cooking time. Remove the lid during the last 20 minutes of cooking time, to allow the sauce to further reduce.
- Transfer the ribs to a serving platter or dish. Let the sauce and solids sit in the pot for a few minutes to cool and with a shallow spoon, skim off as much of the fat as possible from the surface. Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper, and add the vinegar.
- Serve the ribs on top of creamy polenta with additional braising liquid.
- In a large saucepan, bring the milk, water, butter and salt to a boil. Add the polenta and whisk constantly for 3 to 4 minutes.
- Reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 45 minutes, partially covered, stirring every 10 minutes or so, to prevent clumping.
- Off heat, stir in the parmesan and adjust the consistency with additional milk, if needed.
To Make Ahead: Prepare your short ribs as directed above. Allow to cool slightly and then place in the refrigerator overnight. The next day, scrape off any solidified fat that may rise to the surface. Bring the gravy and short ribs to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 10-15 minutes, until heated through.
If you loved these Red Wine Braised Short Ribs I would appreciate it so much if you would give this recipe a star review! Also, be sure to snap a picture of your finished dish and share it with me on Instagram using the hashtag #platingsandpairings and tagging me @platingsandpairings.
Wine Pairings for Red Wine Braised Short Ribs:
- A deep, hearty red wine will compliment this dish nicely – Try a Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc or a Zinfandel.