Beer-Braised Chipotle Short Ribs with Jicama Slaw

Don’t be daunted when I tell you that you should begin this beef short rib recipe two days in advance of serving. The key ingredient in this recipe is time, and the most important technique you will be asked to master is patience. Waiting will be the hardest part, but I assure you the results are well worth it.

The first 24 hours requires making a knock-your-socks-off chipotle spice paste which is rubbed all over the short ribs. The meat is then tucked away in the refrigerator overnight where it will mingle and mull with the spices, and you, the cook, will exercise your patience.

The second day invites a little hands on kitchen work to satisfy your inner-cook. The meat will be seared in a hot pan and then smothered in an intoxicating stock of beer, tomato and onion. If you haven’t yet mastered the patience technique, you will have another opportunity to practice, when the pot of meat, soup and spice is banished to the oven where it will slow cook over several hours. As the meat braises, a heady aroma of spice and meat will fill your kitchen causing your stomach to rumble, your mouth to water and your nose to tingle, leading you to question whether you have the cojones to wait another day to consume this concoction.

You will dig deep within and find the inner strength to muster more patience. The braised meat will cool, while the soup is reduced to a viscous sauce – teasing and testing your will-power as you taste it for seasoning. Then, once again, the pot of beef will be stowed away in the refrigerator overnight, where the newly shredded meat will continue to absorb the flavors of the sauce. The following day, the congealed fat will have risen to form a tidy lid over the stew. It will be swiftly and eagerly removed, like the wrapping of a gift, to reveal a burnished red, intensely flavored stew. As you taste it your senses will light up, because these short ribs will be crazy good. You will feel happy, warm and sated, as though you are trying on a new fluffy pullover on a gray day. You will be content, knowing that you succeeded in making this dish, while the mouths you are feeding are humming with delight at the table – a deserving reward for your time and patience.

Beer Braised Chipotle Short Ribs with Jicama Slaw

This recipe is best made 2 days before serving. Feel free to double the portion for a crowd. Serves 4.

Part 1:
3 garlic cloves, smashed
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon chipotle chile powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon paprika
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

6 short ribs, 3-4 inches in length, about 3.5 pounds

Combine all of the rub ingredients together in a bowl. Smear over the short ribs. Refrigerate at least 3 hours, preferably overnight.

Part 2:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 yellow onion, sliced
1 bottle dark beer
1 – 16 ounce can Italian plum tomatoes
2 bay leaves
1 heaping tablespoon brown sugar
Salt to taste

Flour or corn tortillas
Jicama Slaw (recipe below)
Chopped avocado
Cilantro leaves
Lime wedges

Preheat oven to 350 F. Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat until very hot. Add the short ribs in one layer in batches. Brown on all sides, then transfer to a plate. Repeat with remaining short ribs.  Reduce heat to medium. Add onion to the pot and sauté, 2 minutes. Carefully add the beer, scraping up any brown bits and cook 1 minute. Add tomatoes with juices and bay leaves. Return ribs and any juices to the pot, submerging the meat in the stock. Cover and transfer to oven. Bake until meat is tender, 3 hours.
Remove pot from the oven. Transfer the meat to a bowl and discard the bones.
Bring the stock to a boil and cook until reduced by half, skimming fat with a spoon. Add sugar and any accumulated juices from the meat to the stock. Taste for salt.
While the stock is cooking, and when the meat is cool enough to handle, shred the meat.  Add along with any juices to the stock and heat through. (May be prepared up to 1 day in advance. Refrigerate, covered. Skim solidified fat from the top before reheating.)

To serve, arrange a tortilla on a plate. Spoon Jicama Slaw down the center of the tortilla. Spoon meat over the slaw, and drizzle with some of the juices. Sprinkle with chopped avocado, cilantro leaves and juice from a lime wedge. Roll up and enjoy.

Jicama Slaw
Makes 4-5 cups

3 cups shredded red cabbage
3 cups shredded jicama
3 green onions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
1 small sweet red pepper thinly sliced
1 jalapano pepper, finely chopped
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1-2 teaspoons salt, to taste
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup chopped Italian parsley leaves

Combine the cabbage, jicama, green onions and peppers together in a large bowl. Whisk the lime juice, oil, Tabasco, cumin, salt and pepper together in a small bowl. Pour over the cabbage and toss to combine. Refrigerate at least one hour and up to 6 hours. Before serving, stir in the cilantro and parsley.

If you like this, you might enjoy these recipes:
Korean-Style Beef Lettuce Cups from TasteFood
Moroccan Lamb Stew from TasteFood
Braised Short Ribs with Horseradish Gremolata from Amateur Gourmet
Lucques Short Ribs from Alice Q. Foodie
Dan Barber’s Braised Short Ribs from Food52

24 responses to “Beer-Braised Chipotle Short Ribs with Jicama Slaw

  1. I’m not daunted! I love this recipe. The slaw looks amazing too.

  2. I think my husband would do just about anything for me if I made him these short ribs! They look mouthwatering and oh so good…

  3. Chezsuzanne

    OMG Lynda this looks just amazing and right up my alley! What’s the saying? All good things come to those who wait? Or did I just make that up??

  4. Oh my….I had to tie on a bib just to get through this post without drooling all over my shirt. Sounds fabulous and worth every second of patience required. – S

  5. Looks de-lish!

  6. This looks freaking fabulous!! Well worth the effort!! The slaw looks so refreshing too!

  7. Sounds delicious. It must be good with that long of a prep time. I bet the time is well worth it

  8. OMG…good things come to those who wait…and I will definitely have to try this out. I was drooling just reading your post!!!

  9. Ribs are braising in the oven now and my house smells SO good that the electricians that just came in to do some work were RAVING. I threw together a batch of Boraccho Beans for tomorrows gluttony fest and will be trying my hand at homemade tortillas tomorrow as well. You are right, the smell is nearly torture its so darned good!! Thank you for sharing this recipe!!!

  10. Alright everyone, I just finished savoring my 3rd taco from this recipe. There is absolutely NO exaggeration on how fabulous these are. It was definitely…definitely worth the wait. I’m in short rib/taco heaven…pardon me while I go wallow in the sheer hapiness…..

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  12. This looks like an amazing recipe. I’m assuming that boneless short ribs are somewhat less desirable (but I’ve had great success with these in other recipes)?
    Also, given all the time involved with this, what about cooking at 200 degrees for 8 hours instead of less time at 350?

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