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Beer & Balsamic Braised Beef Short Ribs

Tender, melt-in-your-mouth beef short ribs make a delicious meal, especially during the cooler months of the year. Short ribs tend to have a lot of fat and connective tissue, making them ideal for hands-off, low and slow cooking methods such as braising, whether in a slow cooker, on the stove top or in the oven. I imagine an instant pressure cooker gadget could cook them much faster, but I quite like having something cooking low and slow in the oven while I putter around the house.

Short ribs are taken from the chuck, brisket, rib, or plate areas of beef. They contain a short portion of the rib bone, which is overlain by meat of varying degrees of thickness.

There are two common cuts of short ribs: English-style, which are cut into long or short one-bone pieces, and flanken-style, which are cut into strips across several ribs. Plan on at least one pound per person, or about two 8 cm pieces per person. Of course, this all depends on how meaty the ribs are, and the appetite of the folks at your table.

Beer and balsamic vinegar lend a sumptuous richness to these ribs, which fall off the bone in the very best way. Because there are a few steps to this dish and the cooking time is the better part of the afternoon, this recipe is ideal for weekend cooking. Serve with buttery mashed potatoes or even parsnip puree for elevated supper fare.


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