Even though the fall days have been warm and sunny, autumnal evenings cool off quickly. In the kitchen, I have started thinking about comfort foods such as braised meats, which can be slow cooked to perfection in a complex, deep-flavored sauce.

After stopping by Sur La Table recently and tasting these Cabernet Braised Short Ribs – left over from a class the night before – I decided it was time to break out the Dutch oven and go for some hearty, fall fare. I served these with some over-baked polenta dotted with butter and creamy blue cheese from Oregon.

If you’ve got time to make these on the weekend, put them in your refrigerator, and then heat them up during the week. That way, you can easily skim off the excess fat before reheating.


Cabernet Braised Short Ribs

8 short ribs

Sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Flour for dredging

6 tablespoons canola  oil

2 red onions, sliced thin

8 cloves garlic, jackets removed, left whole

3 shallots, finely chopped

2 sprigs fresh rosemary, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

¼ cup fresh tomato or tomato puree

2 cups cabernet sauvignon

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1 cup chicken stock

Salt and pepper to taste


Season the ribs with salt and pepper, dredge in flour, shake off excess flour. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

In a large, Dutch oven, heat the oil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium high and sear the ribs, turning occasionally, until dark golden brown, 15 to 18 minutes. Transfer the ribs to a platter and set aside.

Add the onions, garlic and shallots to the pot and cook until the garlic cloves are softened, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add the red wine and remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.

Replace the ribs to the pot. Cover tightly, place in the oven and braise for 1 to 2 hours, until the meat is fork tender.

Allow the ribs to rest for 10 minutes in the sauce, transfer to a warmed platter and serve.