Friday, April 1, 2011

umami overdose

Time has come to dust off some favourite winter recipes. This one is up there for sure. It somehow achieves richness and lightness - the holy grail. It does require 12-24hr marinade in wine and herbs but it makes all the difference and the mash is heavenly. This is one of the first times I experienced layers of Umami, a really special dish. If you are using instant (salt-rich) stock use about double the dilution/half the strength as you are also adding anchovies - one of my fave secret ingredients.

I last served it with 09 Glen Carlou Pinot Noir and it was a beaut.

Braised beef short ribs in red wine and horseradish and goat's cheese mash.



  •  Ingredients
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped
  • 1 medium stick celery chopped
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp rosemary, chopped
  • 1 tbsp thyme
  • 1 tbsp cracked black peppercorns
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 750 ml good quality dry red wine
  • 8 meaty single-rib portions of beef short ribs sawed crosswise by your butcher, about 200g each or about an index finger length and rectangular in shape.
  • 900 ml veal or beef stock
  • 24 pitted black olives – taste them first to check for bitterness
  • 4 tinned anchovies, chopped
  • good knob of butter.
dreamy mash
  • 6 medium potatoes
  • 200 ml double cream
  • 150 g rindless goats' cheese
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp prepared horseradish
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 tbsp coriander, chopped
1. First prepare the ribs. In a large casserole dish, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, and celery and fry, stirring now and then, until the vegetables are softened.

2. Mix in the garlic, rosemary, thyme, peppercorns and orange zest. Add the wine and bring to a boil over high heat.

3. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Set aside to cool completely. Place the ribs in a large bowl and add the cooled wine mixture. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator at least overnight, preferably 24 hours.

4. Remove the ribs and reserve. Strain the marinade into a large casserole dish. Bring the marinade to a boil over high heat. Boil until reduced by a quarter, 20 to 30 minutes.

5. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200°C. Place the short ribs in a large casserole dish. Add the reduced marinade and the veal stock. Bring to a boil over high heat.

6. Cover and bake in the oven until the beef is very tender and pulling from the bones, 2½-3 hours. Remove and reserve the ribs.

7. The sauce should be thick enough to coat a wooden spoon. If not reduce by cooking briskly until the sauce does coat a wooden spoon.

8. Mix in the olives and chopped anchovy along with a good knob of butter.

9. Towards the end of the beef's baking time, prepare the mashed potatoes. Place the mashed potatoes in the bowl of food mixer with the paddle attachment and beat.

10. Meanwhile, in a pan, heat together the butter, goats' cheese and cream to boiling point and slowly pour over the potatoes, with the paddle running.

11. Add in the horseradish and season with freshly ground pepper. Beat until light and whipped.

12. Spoon mashed potato onto warm serving plates, add a portion of the ribs and sauce to each serving, garnish with chopped coriander and serve at once.



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