Cooking Our Favorite Restaurant Dishes at Home
Braised short ribs are a cooks' best friend. They take maybe five minutes of effort to create a seared and flavorful crust, then they slowly cook away to fall off the bone tenderness.
Of one the best braised short ribs Gothamist has tasted recently came from the kitchen of Centrico, the new Mexican-inspired Tribeca restaurant of Drew Nieporent and recent Iron Chef America competitor Aaron Sanchez.
Centrico’s short ribs are braised in a deep crimson ancho chili broth, which adds deep pepper flavor along with a nice, mellow spice. In the Gothamist version of this dish, we braised the ribs in smoky and spicy chipotle peppers for even more flavor and spiciness.
Gothamist suggests a creamy silky puree with a braise – in this case the earthy flavor of turnips (they get a bum rap, try them). To add another layer of flavor, Gothamist spoons a gremolata made of chopped cilantro, toasted almonds and lemon zest over the top of the ribs.
Chipotle Braised Short Ribs
turnip puree, cilantro almond gremolata
This dish is pretty spicy, but not overwhelmingly so to our tastes. You can add less chipotle if you’d like, or use a less spicy chili like a dried poblano or ancho. Those who aren’t fans of cilantro should substitute with parsley. Serve this with a side salad.
Ingredient Shopping List
Recipe serves two people.
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Olive Oil or safflower oil
4 cups chicken or veg stock
4 medium sized white turnips
7-8 short ribs, bone in, about 1 ¾ lbs
2 cloves garlic
1 heaping handful sliced almonds
1 bunch cilantro
1 can chipotle peppers
Estimated cost of ingredients: $18-20 at Fairway
Make the Short Ribs
Preheat oven to 300.
Chop one small onion, two cloves garlic and two chipotle peppers, removed from adobo, the red sauce they are covered in. Reserve.
Heat oil in a dutch oven or large, heavy covered pot over high heat. Season both sides of ribs with salt and pepper. When pot is nearly smoking add ribs without crowding them and sear on all sides until they form a brown crust. Do this in batches, if necessary.
When all ribs have browned, add onions and garlic and saute 1 minute to brown lightly. Stir in chopped chipotles, about 4-5 tblsp of the red adobo sauce from the can and enough broth to just cover ribs (about 4 cups). Mix them all together gently and make sure to scrape the bottom of the pan for the browning in the pan. Bring to very hot, just before boiling. Reduce heat to gently simmering, then place in the oven for about 3 hours. Make sure to check this continually to make sure the liquid is not boiling. There should be little blips of bubbling here and there. If it is too hot, reduce the heat as this will make your ribs too tough.
Make the Gremolata
Chop two tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro. Peel the zest from a lemon and chop about 1 teaspoon worth. Toast a handful of sliced almonds in a dry pan on high heat for 2 minutes. Chop finely, about 2 tblsps worth. In a small bowl add the gremolata ingredients and season with salt, pepper and just a touch of olive oil to bring it together. Mix and set aside.
Make the Turnip Puree
Begin the make this when the ribs are about ½ hour away from finishing. Place a large pot of salted water to boil. Peel the turnips with a veg peeler and cut them into 8ths. Toss them in the water and cook until soft and tender, about 5 mins. Drain. Transfer turnips to a food processor, add a pat of butter, salt, pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice and puree until smooth. Set aside.
Finish the Dish
When the ribs are finished cooking, carefully remove them with large tongs and set aside. Pour your braising liquid through a fine mesh strainer into a small pot. Skim the fat off of the top of the sauce. You’ll remove a good ¼ of the liquid. Take the time to do this, it’s worth it. Place the liquid back on the heat and place on simmer for about 5 minutes. Add a pat of butter, check for salt and pepper and add a squeeze of lemon juice. Reheat your turnip puree, place a mound on your plate, place your ribs on the puree and ladle with sauce. Top the ribs with your gremolata and serve.