California Short Ribs

By • January 6, 2011 10 Comments

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Author Notes: I named these because of the addition of orange and orange zest and because the chocolate is reminiscent of a Mexican mole'. This is a rich sauce that can pair well with a big California Cabernet Sauvignon. dymnyno

Serves serves 10

  • 6 pounds beef short ribs, bone in (be sure and ask your butcher for the meaty end only)
  • 2 cups sweet yellow onions, chopped
  • 1 cup celery, chopped
  • 1 cups carrots, chopped
  • 1 whole bottle dry red wine (I used Cabernet)
  • 1 cup sweet vermouth (I use Vya)
  • 1 cup canned tomatoes, (hopefully your own, chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
  • water
  • 1 tbs tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons orange zest
  • olive oil to saute shortribs and vegetables
  1. Salt and pepper the ribs and brown them on all sides in a little olive oil in a large dutch oven.
  2. When the ribs are browned on all sides, remove them from the pot. Pour off the fat in the pot, then add a little olive oil.
  3. Add the vegetables and the thyme to the pot and saute' them until the onion becomes translucent and remove them from the pot.
  4. Add the red wine and the vermouth to the pot and reduce by half.
  5. Add the tomatoes and tomato paste and bring to a boil.
  6. Add the meat and vegetables back to the pot.
  7. Add enough water to almost cover the shortribs.
  8. Put the lid on the dutch oven and braise the shortribs in a 275 degree oven for about 3 hours or until very tender.
  9. Remove from the oven; using a slotted spoon, remove the meat from the pot and set aside.
  10. Remove the vegetables and thyme and press to extract all the juice that you can. Discard the vegetables.
  11. Heat the sauce and add the chocolate, orange zest and reduce until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. It will probably be thick enough without much reducing.
  12. Return the meat back to the pot and reheat.
  13. Serve with sauce poured over the meat and garnish with orange zest.

More Great Recipes: Beef & Veal|Entrees|Stews|Ribs

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Comments (10) Questions (0)


10 months ago Kathy Kiely

this sauce does not reduce as quickly as they say. Took quite some time.


over 3 years ago lastnightsdinner

These sound absolutely wonderful.


over 3 years ago Shalini

I love the chocolate and vermouth and orange combo too. Looks fantastically comforting.


over 3 years ago Lizthechef

I'm making these for us tomorrow - trying out a recipe for a rutabaga pureé as a side. Thanks, Mare!


over 4 years ago monkeymom

I was totally thinking of a mole type sauce for short ribs. This looks really great.


over 4 years ago dymnyno



over 4 years ago dymnyno

#2 should be short ribs, not cheeks. (I tested this recipe with beef cheeks, too.)


over 3 years ago dymnyno

Oven should be 275...300 depending on how hot your oven is. I have a gas and an electric oven and my electric oven is hotter that the gas oven.


over 4 years ago thirschfeld

Can't go wrong with those flavors.


over 4 years ago dymnyno

I was really into oranges today...I made 9 cups of blood orange marmalade earlier.