dinner easy-peasy favorites

Bottle of Wine Beef (aka Splatter City)

Disclaimer: This is an Anne Burrell braised short ribs recipe. She is a national treasure. Trust the “brown food tastes good” queen. Do it.

I made it with stew beef and short ribs because WHO CAN FIND SPECIFIC CUTS OF MEAT RIGHT NOW AND THAT’S WHAT I WOUND UP WITH FROM AN INSTACART SUBSTITUTION. Sorry for yelling.

Disclaimer #2: This recipe will take you at LEAST four hours.  IT. IS. WORTH. IT. Eva ate this for breakfast, lunch, and dinner the following day. I kid you not. Now when I say we’re having beef, “is it my favorite kind, mommy?”

Ingredients:

  • 3 – 4 lbs chuck roast, whole not cubed (or 6 bone-in short ribs)
  • Large yellow onion
  • 3 carrots
  • 3 celery stalks
  • 2 -4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 cup tomato paste (yes, really, the original AB recipe calls for 1.5 cups)
  • 1 750ml bottle of robust red wine – I like Cabernet Sauvignon – I spelled that right on the first try. Nailed it!
    • If you’re like me and working a full time job while trying to homeschool and keep everything else running smoothly, go ahead and sample that wine straight from that bottle before you dump it into the pot. You earned it. Or you could be classy and put some in a glass. Either way, no judgement here.
  • Bunch of fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Salt
  • Beef broth or water (I prefer broth) – 2 to 3 cups

Do all of these steps:

  • Cut the meat into large sections then season generously with salt (if you managed to find short ribs, well done, you. Don’t cut them, just season them with salt)
  • Puree all the vegetables and garlic in a food processor until a paste-ish consistency
  • Coat a dutch oven (or other high-sided oven-approved pot) with olive oil and heat over med-high heat
  • Add the meat to the pan and sear each side until very, very brown
    • don’t overcrowd the pan, do this in batches if you need to. you want crust not steamed meat.
  • Remove the meat (if you’re using short ribs, drain the fat out and re-coat pan with olive oil. If you’re using stew meat, don’t bother draining because it doesn’t render that much fat)
  • Add veggies to the pot, season with salt, let them steam the meat crust off the bottom of the pot, then scrape them around to pull the crust up and coat veg
  • Pat the veg back down to completely cover the bottom of the pot and let a brown crust form (5 – 7 min, maybe as much as 10, just check every now and then) – scrape brown bits up and repeat one more time
  • After scraping the pan again, add the tomato paste and stir, stir, stir, then let it brown for about five minutes
  • Add half of the wine and let it deglaze the bottom of the pan, then stir to combine with the veg
  • Add the other half of the wine and stir to combine
    • I like adding the wine in two steps so that the liquid isn’t too splashy. I make enough of a mess as it is
  • Let this mixture reduce by half
    • I partially cover the pot with its lid – this step is SPLATTERY
    • Preheat your oven to 375 during this step
  • Add meat (and meat juice. mmmm, meat juice) back into the pan, then add enough beef broth (usually takes me 2 or 3 cups) so the meat is just covered by liquid, and add the thyme (tie the bundle with kitchen twine) and bay leaves
  • Cover and put in the oven for three hours, or until meat is very tender, turn the meat over half way through cooking
  • Check periodically and add more broth as needed
  • Take the pot lid off during the last 20 minutes of cooking for one more dose of brown flavor goodness

ERMAHGEEERRRRDDDDD so good. Serve with a baked potato and a salad, or roasted broccoli and you’ve got yourself a happy mouth, and in my case, a happy kiddo.

I may even go so far as to say that it tastes even better the next day. So, this would actually be a really good ‘make a day ahead for company’ recipe (if that’s ever a thing again). Socially distant open-air braised beef just doesn’t seem right. It’s more of a get together and be cozy and close and tell good stories and enjoy good wine, and laugh and be full and that sort of thing food.

I don’t really have a story to go with this, it’s just really, really, really, really, really GOOD. Phenomenal. Splendiforous. Superb. Sensational. Can ya dig it?

p.s. yes, Eva does like broccoli.

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