I've been sick for almost two weeks. I've had that horrible crud that has been going around and finally broke down last Monday and paid a visit to my doctor. She prescribed meds and bed rest and by yesterday afternoon I was finally feeling human again.
Since I hadn't eaten much of anything for over a week and a half, by mid-week this week I was looking for something that would stick to my ribs and with lots of flavor. God bless Mike Mulligan at Mike's Table. He came through like a champ and didn't even know it.
As I was sitting in front of the computer, wading through 127 entries in my Google reader, I came across an entry from Mike, Beef Short Ribs Marsala Pasta. I wasn't in the mood for pasta, but beef cooked in Marsala wine over mashed potatoes...Mmmmmm!! Oooo, I was hungry!
I had a brand new bottle of Marsala in the pantry, plenty of potatoes and a package of four very large boneless beef short ribs in the freezer and I got started.
This dish was a hit and made enough beef in that wonderful savory, rich gravy for dinner for the three of us, plus Tom vacuumed bagged enough for another meal. Next time, I'll try it over the pasta as Mike originally suggested.
Adapted from Beef Short Ribs Marsala Pasta at Mike's Table
This recipe contains my changes to Mike's recipe.
3 strips bacon
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 to 5 pounds boneless beef (I used boneless beef short ribs, but I think this would be good with almost any cut of beef)
1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 of a large onion, diced
2 carrots, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
8 cloves garlic, finely minced
3 cups Marsala wine
2 bay leaves
2 sprigs rosemary, leaves removed from stems
handful of chopped parsley
2 cups beef stock
8 ounces crimini mushrooms, cleaned and quartered (they're called Baby Bellas here)
Cut the boneless beef into approximately 1-inch cubes. Put the cubed beef into a gallon size plastic bag. Add the flour, kosher salt and pepper to the bag. Seal the bag and shake well to coat all of the pieces of meat. Set aside
In a large pot or dutch oven, cook the bacon over medium high heat until crispy and remove from the pan to a paper towel. Add the olive oil to the bacon drippings, then add the pieces of meat a few at a time, browning each piece for 2 or 3 minutes per side. Remove from the pan and add more beef pieces until all pieces are browned. Set aside.
Saute the celery, carrot and onion in the pan until the onion is translucent, about 5 to 8 minutes. Add the minced garlic and cook for about 1 minute more.
Deglaze the pot with the 3 cups of wine, scraping all the browned bits from the bottom. Allow the wine to come to a boil. Add the beef stock, mushrooms and the herbs, mix well, then return the beef and the cooked bacon to the pan. Bring to a boil again, cover, reduce heat to a slow simmer and cook for about three hours, stirring every 30 minutes or so.
After three hours, the beef should be fork tender and the sauce should be thickened nicely. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Keep warm while you make your mashed potatoes.