Braised Short Ribs with Morel Mushroom and Canellini Bean Ragout
Colin Crowley, Terlato Wine Group Executive Chef
6 beef short ribs, approximately 1-lb each
1 large carrot, unpeeled and roughly chopped
1 medium onion, unpeeled and roughly chopped
3 ribs of celery, roughly chopped
1/2 head of garlic, halved horizontally
1/4 cup dried porcini mushrooms, reconstituted
1 teaspoon fennel seed
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 cup red wine
1 quart veal stock, preferably unseasoned
Salt and pepper
3 cups dried cannellini beans
2 quarts chicken stock
1/2 large carrot, peeled and diced small
1/2 medium onion, peeled and diced small
1 rib celery, diced small
1 cup fresh morel mushrooms
1 shallot, minced
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup grape tomatoes, halved
Salt and pepper
In a large, uncovered stockpot, soak the dried beans in water (to cover by 2 inches) overnight. Alternatively, bring beans and water to a boil, turn off heat and let sit for 1 hour.
Season short ribs with salt and pepper. Cover bottom of a 4-quart braising pan with an 1/8 inch of olive oil and heat until hot, but not smoking. Brown ribs a few minutes on each side until browned and set aside.
Drain the fat from the pan, leaving a tablespoon or two. Add the roughly chopped carrot, onion, celery and garlic and sauté over high heat until vegetables start to brown. Add porcinis, fennel seed, peppercorns and thyme and cook until vegetables are well caramelized. Add wine and reduce until almost dry. Add stock, check and adjust seasoning and cook until stock is heated through. Add short ribs (stock should be about 3/4 of the way up the sides of the ribs) and cook in 300 ˚ oven for about 3 hours.
When shorts ribs are halfway done, drain the beans and rinse once with clean water. Return beans to pot and add chicken stock and diced carrot, onion, and celery. Bring to simmer and cook over low heat until beans are tender (1 to 1½ hours). Remove from heat and set aside. In a medium sauté pan, sauté the shallot in the butter until translucent, add the morels, season with salt and pepper and cook until almost dry.
Remove short ribs from oven and add 1 cup of the braising liquid along with the tomatoes to the morels. Simmer until tomatoes begin to soften, stir into beans and heat through. Remaining braising liquid and vegetables can be discarded. Halve each short rib and serve each person 1-2 halves over a generous scoop of the ragout. Bones can be removed for a more refined presentation. Simple sautéed escarole makes a wonderful additional accompaniment.