Braised Short Ribs
- 3 pounds bone-in country-style pork ribs
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 carrot, chopped
- 1 stalk celery, chopped
- 1 onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
- Vegetable cooking spray
- 1 1/3 cups half-and-half
- 1 cup milk
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/3 cup coarse polenta, or corn grits
- Kosher salt
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Pat the ribs dry and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat and brown the ribs on all sides, working in batches if needed. Remove the ribs and set aside. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil to the Dutch oven and reduce the heat to medium. Add the carrots, celery, onions and some salt and pepper and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, to remove the raw flavor, about 3 minutes. Deglaze the pan with the vinegar, and then add the red pepper flakes and bay leaves.
- Add the ribs back to the pan and add enough stock to reach halfway up the sides of the ribs. Bring the pan to a simmer, cover and place in the oven. Braise until the meat is tender, about 1 1/2 hours. During the last half hour, uncover to allow the liquid to reduce and the pork to brown.
- Serve the ribs with Creamy Polenta, spooning the sauce on top, and garnishing with parsley.
- Spray the insert of a slow cooker with cooking spray (for easier clean up) and preheat on high.
- In a medium saucepan, add 1 cup of the half-and-half, the milk, 1 tablespoon of the butter and the polenta. Season with salt and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, whisking constantly to keep the mixture lump-free. Boil for 2 to 3 minutes. Pour the mixture into the slow cooker and cook on high for 2 hours, stirring once or twice per hour.
- Once you are ready to serve, open the slow cooker and whisk in the remaining 1 tablespoon butter, the remaining 1/3 cup half-and-half and the Parmesan. Salt and pepper conservatively since the polenta will be served with a robustly salted dish.