Braised Short Rib w/ Tarragon Polenta & Poached Egg

I obviously love braising and will be taking those skills to an audition this weekend (pumped!) so I figured I would share a little preview with you here. This one calls for a simple braise of red wine and broth accompanied by some silky tarragon infused polenta and a lovely, runny poached egg; perfect for the colder weather we are beginning to experience across the East coast. I used a pressure cooker for this one to cut the time; this would normally take 3+ hours and using the pressure cooker takes it down to one hour of cooking time!

Serves 3-4

2 lbs beef short ribs

2 carrots, peeled and chopped

1 shallot, chopped

1 onion, chopped

2 stalks of celery, chopped

1 cup dry red wine (use good wine for better results)

1 cup beef or veal broth

1 cup yellow corn meal

½ cup heavy whipping cream

3 cups chicken stock

2 bunches of tarragon

3-4 eggs poached – 1 per person: http://bit.ly/OoZlEP

S&P to taste

Coriander

Heat 1 tbsp of EVOO in the pressure cooker and season all sides of the ribs liberally with S&P and coriander.  Add the meat to the pan and be sure and brown on all sides; you want a nice dark brown color.

Browned short ribs; they don’t look like much now…but wait until the magic happens!

Remove the meat and place to the side; now add your chopped onion, celery, carrot and shallot to the pot and cook for about 5 – 7 minutes to soften them up and bring out their juices.

Chopped veg; you can either leave them in the sauce when done or remove them for a later use

After they’re cooked add the wine and the broth and bring to a boil; reduce the heat and add the tarragon (I usually tie a bunch with butcher’s twine for easy removal) and the short ribs. Be sure to save some of the tarragon to garnish with before serving.

Tarragon – one of the most underutilized herbs in the pantry!

Be sure the liquid only comes up about ½ – ¾ up the meat or you will essentially boil them. Bring the braise to a boil, lock the lid and follow the instructions it came with to ensure you do not hurt yourself…because no one wants that. I usually cook it on high for 50 minutes to get the meat super tender and have the fat melt into the meat! If you don’t have a pressure cooker, use a deep saute pan with a tight fitting lid and cook for 3-4 hours.

While this is cooking, cook the polenta by bringing the stock and one bunch of tarragon (be sure to tie it off like above) to a boil and slowly whisk in the corn meal; reduce the heat and simmer for about 15 minutes. Remove the tarragon and whisk in the cream; continue cooking on low until the mixture pulls away from the sides of the pan.

Once the meat is done, remove the tarragon and strain the liquid into a sauce pan; bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for about five minutes, or until it can coat the back of a spoon. To finish the dish, spoon about ½ cup of polenta into a bowl, chop the beef and place on the top of the polenta, place the egg on top of the beef and garnish with some chopped tarragon. Spoon about 2 tbsp of the sauce around the base of the bowl, and you’re done!

You gotta love the runny egg!

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