Mole-braised beef short ribs

Prep 35 min
Total 4 hours 5 min
Serves 4

Mole is a rich and complex Mexican sauce used to simmer various kinds of meat. This dish can be made up to 3 days in advance.

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Ingredients

3 tbsp
all-purpose flour
2 tbsp
unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp
salt, divided
2 kg
beef short ribs, cut into 1-rib pieces
2 tbsp
1
large onion, diced
1
head of garlic, skins removed, minced
2 cups
full-bodied red wine, such as cabernet sauvignon
1 1/2 cups
156-mL can
1/2 cup
dried cherries, coarsely chopped
1 tsp
dried oregano
1/2 tsp
smoked paprika
1/2 tsp

Polenta

3 1/2 cups
1 cup
1/4 tsp
1 tbsp
toasted sesame seeds
3 tbsp
chopped cilantro

Instructions

  • PREHEAT oven to 350F. Stir flour with cocoa powder and 1/2 tsp salt in a large bowl. Coat ribs lightly, a few at a time, with flour mixture. Transfer ribs to a large plate. Discard any leftover flour.
  • HEAT a large, wide oven-safe pot over medium-high. Add oil, then half of ribs. Cook, turning meat, until brown on all sides, about 4 min. If ribs start to burn, reduce heat to medium. Transfer browned ribs to a large plate. Repeat with remaining ribs. Pour off all but 1 tbsp fat from pan or add oil, if needed.
  • ADD onion. Reduce heat to medium. Stir often, adding a splash of water if needed, 5 min. Stir in garlic, wine, water, tomato paste, cherries, chipotle, oregano, paprika, cumin and remain- ing 1 tsp salt. Stir, scraping up bits from pan bottom, until combined. Boil, then return ribs along with any juices to pan. Add cinnamon stick. Make sure ribs are submerged in sauce. Cover pan tightly.
  • BRAISE, covered, in centre of oven, until meat is fork-tender, 3 to 3 1/2 hours. Remove ribs from sauce and set aside. Skim off fat from sauce. Transfer sauce to a blender and purée until smooth, in batches if necessary. Return to pot. Boil, stirring often, then reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer until slightly reduced, 15 to 20 min. Return ribs to pot to warm through. Cover to keep warm until ready to serve.
  • BOIL milk in a large saucepan. Reserve 1/2 cup milk. Whisk cornmeal and 1/4 tsp salt into milk and cook until thickened but still loose, about 1 min. Remove from heat and let stand 2 min to completely absorb liquid. Whisk in reserved milk. Scoop polenta onto serving platter. Top with ribs and sauce, then sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and cilantro.

Nutrition

Calories 1268
Protein 67 g
Carbohydrates 60 g
Fat 83 g
Fibre 4 g
Sodium 600 mg
Excellent source of Iron
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Wine Pairing

A rich intense Amarone from the Valpolicella district in northern Italy is far from a traditional partner for Mexican cuisine, but the qualities that the two share make this combination brilliant. Read more on this pairing here.

Issue: January 2015

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Photo credit: Mole-braised beef short ribs. (Photo, Roberto Caruso.)

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