Bristol Farms had a deal on short ribs, and I felt like cooking. Not the 50-pan, million-ingredient version either. I had a bottle of New Belgian Brewing's Cocoa Mole on hand, and I thought what the heck...worst thing that can happen is I have to pitch the lot and order a pizza.
The beer is spiced and has cocoa added, so I dialed back on the additions to garlic, salt, and pepper. It was wonderful. Not quite Chef Sean wonderful, but far better than most I've had out lately. It also has to be one of the easiest recipes in the world.
I started with about 5 lbs of short ribs. Trim the fat a bit if they need it, Bristol's never need it. Let a bit of the chill come off the meat before searing. Salt and pepper the meat, then put a bit of your favorite oil in a nice big dutch oven or other oven safe pot. Sear the meat until nice and brown in batches, being sure to get all sides. Once done, put all the meat in the pan, nice and snug and in as few layers as possible. Throw in a few pealed garlic cloves (I used either 5 or 6, can't remember.) Poor the beer over the lot, then refill the bottle with water and pour again. Stick in a 300 over for 3 hours, then lower to 250 for another hour. Cool, then refrigerate. The next day, even better two days later, pull the pot out of the fridge and take off as much fat as possible. Pull out the ribs, remove from the bone and trim as needed. Warm the beautiful liquid and reduce by about half, then whisk in a couple of pats of butter while off the heat to thicken it a bit more. Add the ribs, return to a simmer, and warm the meat. Taste before serving. Mine needed a bit more salt, so I went with my Espresso Brava salt, and it was a perfect match. I served it this time with buttered noodles, but they are equally good with mashed potatoes or polenta. Makes great leftovers too.