Thursday, October 15, 2009

Sweet Surprise

Beef Short Ribs are extremely tasty. Although they require tons of cooking time, they are always completely worth every hour then spend braising. I have had my eye on this recipe for quite some time now and couldn't wait until I had a free Saturday to spend at home nurturing this recipe.

I have to be honest though, the short ribs aren't the only thing that drew me to this recipe. There is one really odd, out of place, and surprising ingredient in this recipe that has peaked my interest since the first day I laid eyes on it. Can you guess? What would be the oddest thing you would pair with savory short ribs and pasta? CHOCOLATE. Yep, bittersweet shaved chocolate! I am not even a chocolate fan, but I couldn't imagine what this combination would taste like and so I had to give it a try!

Short Ribs with Tagliatelle
Adapted from Giada De Laurentiis


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 ounces chopped pancetta (about 1/2 cup)
  • 2 1/2 pounds boneless beef short ribs
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley leaves
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 (14-ounce) can tomatoes (whole or diced)
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 1/2 cups beef broth
  • 3/4 cup red wine
  • 1 pound fresh or dried tagliatelle
  • 4 to 6 teaspoons shaved bittersweet chocolate
Place the olive oil in a large heavy soup pot over medium heat. Cook the pancetta until golden and crisp, about 4 minutes.
Meanwhile, trim all silver pieces and excess fat from the ribs and season the short ribs with salt and pepper,
and dredge in the flour.
Using a slotted spoon, remove the pancetta from the pan and set aside. Add the short ribs to the pan and brown on all sides, about 7 minutes total.
Meanwhile, combine the onion, carrot, parsley and garlic in a food processor and blend until finely minced.
Then add the tomatoes and tomato paste and pulse.
Once the short ribs are browned, carefully add the mixture from the food processor to the pot. Return the pancetta to the pot and stir. Add the rosemary, thyme, oregano, bay leaf, beef broth, and wine.

Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 2 hours and 15 minutes. Remove the lid and simmer for another hour and a half, stirring occasionally. Remove the meat from the pot. Using a metal spoon, skim the accumulated fat off the top of the sauce and discard (there will be a lot since the short ribs are very fatty).
Shred the meat using two forks, discarding any excess fat
and return the shredded meat to the pot. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 3/4 teaspoon pepper, or to taste.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 8 to 10 minutes for dried pasta and 2 to 3 minutes for fresh. Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid. Add the pasta to the pot and stir to combine. Add the reserved pasta liquid 1/4 cup at a time, if needed, to moisten the pasta. Transfer to serving bowls, top each bowl with 1 teaspoon of chocolate shavings. Serve immediately.
The chocolate topped pasta was amazing! The flavors were surprisingly complimentary and the bittersweet chocolate did an excellent job in rounding out the savory flavors of the slow cooked beef. If the idea of the chocolate turns you off, no worries - just top this amazing dish with some grated Parmesan.


christenandjames said...

Wow, I have GOT to try this!!

Rachel said...

This looks awesome!!

Anonymous said...

I love braised anything and THAT looks fantastic!!

Sophia said...

I'm not a chocolate fan either, but I LOVE it in savory dishes. I'm SO glad to have found you through've got some brilliant recipes, and I'm super impressed!

teresa said...

what a fun dish, i would love to try this. the addition of chocolate sounds so interesting!

Kerstin said...

Oh, these look fabulous! I've been meaning to try making braised short ribs ever since I had them at Craft.

Anonymous said...

I finally tried this recipe and it was delicious! I posted the link to your recipe on my blog.
Thanks for sharing!