Braised short ribs with polenta crisps

Matt Tebbutt cooks a great autumnal melt-in-the-mouth rib dish from his cookbook
By Matt Tebbutt
Braised short ribs with polenta crisps
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 2 hours 40 minutes
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes plus chilling time
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

For the short ribs

  • 2 white onions, sliced
  • 2 kg beef ribs, cut into 7.5cm pieces (see Cook's note below)
  • 1/2 bunches fresh thyme
  • 1 bulbs garlic, cut in half
  • a few bay leaves
  • 300 ml white wine
  • 50 ml red wine vinegar
  • 100 ml rich chicken stock, or dark veal stock

For the polenta crisps

  • 800 ml fresh vegetable stock
  • 1-2 pieces parmesan rind
  • 1 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 200 g quick-cooking polenta, plus extra for coating
  • 100 ml double cream
  • 1 egg yolk, beaten
  • 50 g parmesan, freshly grated
  • vegetable oil, for deep-frying
  • plain flour, for dredging
  • 2 eggs, beaten

To serve

  • steamed brussels tops, to serve

Tips and Suggestions

Matt says: 'Beef short ribs are tender and delicious when slow-cooked. They are rarely used in Britain, which is crazy because they are one of the tastiest cuts. For the restaurant, we buy them in as off-cuts from the trimmed ribs of beef, so you'll probably need to find a friendly helpful local butcher.'

Method

1. For the polenta crisps: bring the stock to the boil in a deep saucepan. Add the parmesan rinds, rosemary and garlic, remove from the heat and leave to infuse for 10 minutes.

2. Strain the liquid into a new saucepan and bring back to the boil. Pour in the polenta and stir over a low heat for about 5 minutes until it thickens and comes away from the sides of the pan.

3. Stir in the double cream, beaten egg yolk and grated parmesan and stir well.

4. Pour into a shallow tray lined with cling film and transfer to the fridge to set firm, for at least 2 hours.

5. For the short ribs: preheat the oven to 160C/gas 3.

6. Put the chopped onion in the bottom of a heavy-based casserole with a good fitting lid. Add the ribs, thyme, garlic, bay leaves, wine, vinegar and stock. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, cover and bake in the oven for about 2 hours or until almost tender. Remove the casserole from the oven and baste the ribs with the juices from the pan.

7. Remove the lid, return the casserole to the oven and continue to cook, basting the ribs frequently with the sauce until they are tender and the sauce has started to go sticky.

8. To finish the polenta crisps, heat the oil for deep-frying to 180C in a pot or wok. Remove the polenta from the tray and cut into chunky diamonds.

9. Put the flour on one plate, the remaining beaten eggs on another and the extra uncooked polenta on a third. Dip each polenta diamond into flour, egg and polenta, then deep-fry until golden. Drain well.

10. Serve the melting ribs with the onion and sauce, along with the hot polenta crisps and steamed brussels tops.

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