The Minimalist’s Short Ribs with Coffee and Chiles
By Kath Dedon
I was inspired to make Mark Bittman’s Short Ribs with Coffee and Chiles yesterday.
Mark Bittman wrote The Minimalist column for the Dining & Wine section of The New York Times every Wednesday for over 13 years. I have really enjoyed the column and the videos each week. Yesterday’s column was entitled “The Minimalist Makes His Exit”. Yes, it was the last Minimalist column.
It’s not, however, the End. Bittman will be writing regularly in the Opinion section of the Times, and he’ll be writing a recipe column for the Sunday Times’ Magazine. Change can be a good thing.
Gabe Johnson, who shot and produced all of the videos I have enjoyed, picked Short Ribs with Coffee and Chiles as his favorite. Last night, we celebrated The Minimalist and had Short Ribs with Coffee and Chiles!
The recipe called for a dried pasilla chile and a dried chipotle chile. I substituted a dried chile de arbol for the pasilla chile, since I couldn’t find a pasilla chile. I think it was a fine substitution.
The ribs smelled so fabulous as they braised, and they tasted great! The chiles added a just-right flavor kick without adding a lot of heat.
Allow enough time for the long, slow braise. Mine took 3½ hours to get to the tender, falling-off-the-bone stage.
Short Ribs with Coffee and Chiles, garnished with chopped cilantro
Short Ribs with Coffee and Chiles
(Adapted from a Mark Bittman recipe from The Minimalist column in The New York Times)
1 tablespoon oil
4 large, or 8 small short ribs
Salt and pepper
1 large onion, chopped (my onion was HUGE; I used ½ of it and had 1 ½ cups chopped onions)
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 dried pasilla chile, stemmed, seeded, and minced (or 1 dried chile de arbol)
1 dried chipotle chile, stemmed, seeded, and minced
1 cup dry red wine
1 cup strong coffee
1. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium high heat.
2. Brown the short ribs in the oil. Brown each side for about 5 minutes and then turn. Sprinkle with salt and pepper as you turn the ribs.
3. When the ribs are browned, remove to a plate.
4. Reduce the heat to low, and add the onion, garlic, and chiles to the pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 15 minutes, or until the onions are softened. Do not allow them to brown.
5. Add the wine and coffee to the pot and turn the heat to high. Boil, stirring occasionally, until the liquid is reduced to about half.
6. Turn the heat back down to low, and put the ribs back in the pan. It should be barely simmering, with just a few small bubbles. Turn the ribs every hour or so.
7. Cook 3 – 4 hours until the ribs are very tender. Bittman says it should be “beyond when meat falls off the bone”.