This is going to be one of my new favorites, at least if I buy my ribs at my usual butcher counter. I made the mistake of picking up a package of pre-packaged ribs in the beef section at a market I'm not particularly fond of (aside from the convenience of being the closest). I should have known better. Rather than the nice lean ribs I usually get, once I opened these, I found they were all fat on the bottom and not nearly as good. It was the flavor of the completed dish that did it for me, and seriously, I wouldn't hesitate to just make the barley mixture some night and go meatless. It was that good!
After having the Chianti Braised Short Ribs at Olive Garden several years ago, I found that they have the recipe posted on their website, so that's how I usually make them. I decided to switch things up a bit this time around, and as much as I love their recipe, I'm glad I did.
INGREDIENTS: (Serves Two)
6 beef short ribs
Salt and Pepper
2 t olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced or 1t
jarred minced garlic with red peppers
Pinch of crushed red pepper
(If using clove garlic)
2 c red wine
1 can beef broth
1 can Del Monte Petite Diced Tomatoes with Zesty Jalapenos
1 T fresh thyme leaves
1 T fresh chopped rosemary
1/2 c pearled barley
1 lg carrot, peeled and sliced into coins
6 kale stems, rough chopped
Pat the ribs dry and season with a little salt and pepper. In a large covered pan over medium-high, brown the ribs in the olive oil on both sides, then remove them from the pan and set aside. (If you don't have a large covered pan, you can either use a pot or cover your largest pan with a cookie sheet.)
To the same pan, add the onion and garlic and sauté until the onion begins to soften and the garlic becomes fragrant. You can see how the onion is picking up the color and flavor left behind by the ribs. It already smells good. :)
Slowly add the wine to the onions and garlic, allowing it to deglaze the pan. Bring the mixture to a boil and let it reduce for 3-5".
Next add the tomatoes, beef broth, thyme and rosemary, again giving the liquid a few minutes to simmer and reduce before introducing the ribs back to the pan (along with any juices that accumulated while they were waiting).
Turn the heat down to where it is just barely simmering, pop the cover on and walk away for an hour and a half to two hours. At that point, stir in the barley and carrots, put the cover back on and continue to cook for another half hour.
Next add the chopped kale to the pan, giving it a stir if you have room. Don't panic if it seems like you don't have room or you can't stir without spilling. Just pop the cover back on and let it steam for a few minutes. The kale will wilt down quickly and you can give it a stir then. You can see how high mine is sitting in the pan.
After another 15" or so, the barley should be cooked and have absorbed a lot of the liquid, the kale should be just about right, and the ribs fork tender.
To serve, scoop a serving of the barley mixture onto a bowl/plate, top with a few ribs and sprinkle with some fresh chopped parsley or some reserved rosemary/thyme.