January 4, 2011

Succulent Slow-Cooked Beef Ribs

I never thought I would thank my slow cooker for existing as much as I did the moment I sank my teeth into the first bite of these juicy, fall-off-the-bone beef ribs.

M said, "Whatever my favorite meal was before, scratch that. This is my favorite meal you've ever made." I smiled. This "favorite meal" had taken barely ten minutes of effort. The results tasted like days worth of love and labor. 

The beef ribs were unwrapped from the lovely orange paper the butcher had swaddled them in, and I generously coated each side with salt and pepper. 

Then, they were placed in piping hot pan to brown for a few minutes. As they developed a lovely crust, I whisked together the sauce.

Everything was poured into the slow cooker, set to high, and for four hours our apartment was filled with the smells of succulent meat tenderizing in a hot bath of bubbling gravy. While they were cooking I even went to the gym and did some shopping. Imagine that! At the end of the day, the beauty is that this recipe is perfect for both the seasoned and beginner cook. If you don't have a slow cooker, simply braise them for a few hours over low heat in a dutch oven instead. I promise you the results are bound to be incredible. In fact, someone might even be moved to declare it their favorite meal ever.

Slow-Cooked Beef Ribs serves 2
4 beef short ribs (about 1.5-2 lbs of meat total)
salt and pepper
1/2 cup ketchup
1/8 cup water (use a little to deglaze the pan after browning your ribs, and you'll catch all the delicious bits)
1/8 cup red wine vinegar
1 t. paprika
1 t. Dijon mustard
1/2 t. chili powder
1/4 t. garlic powder
1 t. Worcestershire sauce
1 t. salt

Set a pan (not non-stick) over medium heat and coat with a little bit of oil. Salt and pepper each side of the ribs, then place them in the pan and allow to brown, about 5 minutes on each side. Meanwhile, whisk together the rest of the ingredients. Place the ribs in the slow cooker, then pour the sauce over it. Cover and set to high for at least 4 hours, or on low for 6-8. Serve two ribs each, over mashed potatoes, with gravy poured on top.

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