This is cooked in a slow cooker (not a digital slow cooker but one with only three temp settings - high, low, and warm) plugged into a PID controller. PID controllers are usually used in sous vide cooking ... this is not sous vide cooking per se but certainly cooking at a lower than usual temperature for a much longer period of time. The results are amazing. The recipe evolved over time and was originally cooked in a slow cooker on the warm setting for 18 hours. In experimentation with my slow cooker I had found the average temp on warm was about 150 to 160 degrees but I had to check constantly (at least hourly) for the first 5 to 6 hours with an instant read thermometer to make sure the temp did not drop below 140 degrees F. A PID controller makes cooking this stew in this manner a breeze and worry free as the temperature controll is within a degree either side of the set temperature. Whew!!!! —soupcon
Salt generously the short ribs the day before use. Brown short ribs in a pan in oil and remove to slow cooker plugged into a PID controller. Add the onions, celery and carrot to the pan and sweat. Add to ribs in slow cooker. Add bay leaf, peppercorns, thyme sprig, star anise and garlic to cooker. Deglaze pan the ribs were browned in with splash of cognac and add to the cooker. Add enough wine to cover the ribs, put the lid on the slow cooker, turn the slow cooker on high, set the PID contoller to 180 degrees F. and cook for 8 to 10 hours. Remove ribs from cooker and keep warm. Drain liquid from solids,defat and reduce the remaining liquid in a pot on the stove by 1/2.. Meanwhile in small pot bring small amt water to boil and add onions along with 1 tblsp butter and cook covered. When onions almost tender uncover onions and allow to glaze as water boils away watching to see they don' t burn. Add to ribs. Sweat mushrooms in small amount of melted butter and when cooked add to ribs. Thicken to taste the wine reduction with beurre manie (equal parts butter and flour mashed together) or cornstarch slurry and cook until flour taste removed (if flour is used) or until thickened if cornstarch is used. . Add salt and pepper to taste Add to ribs, mushrooms and onions. Bring to serving temperature and decant if desired to serving dish. Serve 1 rib per person.