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Beer Braised Short Ribs

“I am thankful for the mess after a party because it means I have been surrounded by friends.” – Nancie J. Carmody

Beer and beef.  What’s not to love?

This is a favorite go to for me when entertaining; a sure crowd pleaser with the meat lovers.  A super simple dish with minimal prep, it allows you to spend your time with your guests and not in the kitchen.  It’s also great weekday dinner dish; you can prep it in the morning , turn the slow cooker on low and it’s ready for the finishing touches when you walk back in the door that evening.  The longer you cook the beef the more tender it will be as you are breaking down the collagen in the meat (But, cook it too long and you’ll dry it out so be careful!).  The recipe as is will serve about six people and keeps great in the fridge or freezer as easy meals during a busy week.

You will need:

3lb (1.35kg) beef short ribs (I used Rob Dobson’s Organic, Grass Fed: Cobden, ON)

3 thick slices of bacon, chopped (Aubrey’s Butcher Shop, Nitrate Free, Double Smoked: Ottawa, ON)

1 onion, chopped (Roots and Shoots Farm, Organic: Manotick, ON)

3 cloves of garlic, diced (Roots and Shoots Farm, Organic: Manotick, ON)

3 mushrooms, chopped (Carleton Farm, Organic: Osgoode, ON)

1 large parsnip, chopped (Le potager d’Émylou, Organic: Hatley, QC)

Bottle of your favorite dark ale beer (I used Mill Street’s Tankhouse Ale: Ottawa, ON)

½ cup water (Using beef broth in place of water will enhance the flavor I just didn’t have any on hand)

2 tbsp flour (Castor River Farm, Organic: Metcalfe, ON)

1 garlic chive, sliced (La défriche, Organic: Ripon, QC)

Cut beef into 1-rib pieces. Arrange then on a foil-lined baking sheet and broil, turning once until they are well browned (approx. 8-10 minutes). Once finished, transfer them to the slow cooker.

In a large skillet cook bacon over medium heat until crisp.  Remove the bacon from the skillet and place on paper towel lined plate.

Set aside excess bacon fat and add onion, garlic, mushrooms and parsnips to skillet.  Cook these over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened, approx. 5 minutes.  Add to slow cooker along with bacon.

In the skillet, whisk together beer and water.  Bring to boil, scraping up brown bits.  Stir this juice into the slow cooker.  Cover and cook on low until the meat is tender (approx. 5-6 hours).

Whisk flour with ¼ cup water add into liquid stirring to distribute evenly and avoid clumping.  Cover and cook on high until juice is thickened (approx. 8-10 minutes).  Plate and sprinkle with garlic chives.

I like to serve this savory dish with a hardy bread like my favorite molasses yogurt rye bread (check back for my recipe to come!) and a dark ale, such as Mill Street’s Tankhouse.  For sides, I go for something simple like a steamed green veg (think broccoli or kale) and I like sweet potato fries but a baked russet would go nicely as well.

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