Slow braised short ribs are classic comfort food, and when paired with potato gnocchi and tossed in a stout cheddar cream sauce, they are a perfect comforting supper. Stout Braised Short Ribs Over Potato Gnocchi with Irish Cream Sauce Recipe.
This post was sponsored by the Idaho Potato Commission because it sounded too tasty not to share with them. As always the thoughts and opinions expressed in this post are mine all mine.
Short ribs are a personal favorite of mine. Cut from the lower section of the 6th to 10th rib, short ribs are cut thick, and are heavily laced with fat. Both the ribs you would typically use for smoked barbecue and their chunkier, stubby shorties, require low and slow cooking to break down the meat to become tender and not just overly tough or chewy. For a perfect short rib, you want a fork-tender finished product on the center of the plate with little knife work needed. Braising and smoking are two great methods for achieving this, with their signature low and slow technique.
They are a fat little delicacy that I didn’t have terribly often in my culinary adventures, but now, will jump at any chance to work with. Short ribs pack an amazing amount of hearty flavor in every bite and are a staple dish to master in your own kitchen for a resturant like dining experiance at home.
Inspired by a recent trip to Salvation Cafe in Newport Rhode Island, I enjoyed a classic short rib done Italian style over gnocchi. I got it in my head that I wanted to mimic this idea, but put an Irish spin on it – as the flavor combo of the Rogue Oatmeal Stout slow braised short ribs, a sharp tangy cheese sauce, and tender little gnocchis seemed just about perfect comfort food in my mind.
Gnocchi, if you have never had it, are small potato or ricotta dumplings. They are made into a dough that is rolled into long snakes before being cut into bite-sized little pillows. They have an incredibly soft delicate texture and are perfect to mix into the rotation if you are feeling like pasta just needs a timeout. They can appear intimidating to make at home, but really are just a couple of quality potatoes, egg yolks, flour, and salt and pepper to season. A skill every aspiring cook should practice at least once or twice.
After a few hours of braising, filling my house with an amazing aroma, and an afternoon spent with flour-dusted aprons and perfect little gnocchis for consuming, the meal came together just as expected. The rich cheese sauce coated the gnocchi with the perfect layer of sharp flavor, the beef pulled apart with just my fork, and the roasted cabbage tied the theme altogether. If you hadn’t already guessed, I may have been theming this one on a winter’s end Irish-themed holiday. Stout Braised Short Ribs Over Potato Gnocchi with Irish Cream Sauce will make the cut, every year from here on out.
Tools used in this post
- pastry scraper and chopper
- wooden cutting board / marble cutting board
- braising pot
- Potato Ricer
- Dubliner Cheese
- Optional: Gnocchi Board
For the Potato Gnocchi
- 4 large Idaho® Potatoes russet potatoes scrubbed
- salt and pepper
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 ½ - 2 cups flour
For the Braised Short Ribs
- 4 lbs bone in short ribs bone separated from meat
- Salt and pepper
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion sliced
- 7 cloves garlic smashed and skins removed
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 cup oatmeal stout or other stout or choice
- 1 cup beef broth
- 3 large carrots peeled and chopped into 1”
- 1 bay leaf
- 5 sprigs fresh thyme
For the Irish Cheese Sauce
- 2 tbsp butter
- 2 tbsp flour
- ½ shallot minced
- ¾ cup stout beer
- 1 ¾ cup milk
- 2 tbsp dijon mustard
- 4 oz sharp cheddar shredded
- 4 oz Dubliner or other Irish cheese shredded
- 4 oz gouda or milk smoked whiskey cheese, shredded
- Salt and pepper to taste
For the Gnocchi
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Pierce the potatoes, wrap in foil and bake for 1 hour, until tender.
- Allow the potatoes to cool until able to safely handed. Peel and rice or mash the potatoes.
- Work in the 2 egg yolks and season with salt. Mix to combine.
- Gently, start working in the flour, ½ cup at a time, to make a dough. Use caution to not overwork the dough, as gnocchi should be tender and light.
- Grab a fist full of dough and cover the mass of dough you aren’t working with a clean kitchen towel.
- On a clean, lightly floured surface, roll the dough out into ¾” long tubes (or snakes).
- Using a pastry cutter, divide the dough equally into 1” pillows.
- Gently press each of the gnocchi with the tines of a fork, if desired.
- Arrange the cut gnocchi onto a baking sheet, sprinkle with just a touch more of flour and cover as you work your way through the remainder of the dough. (At this point, you can transfer the gnocchi for freezing if desired by par freezing on the baking sheet before storing in a resealable airtight container for future use).
- Bring a large pot of salted water and reduce to a simmer.
- Gently slide the gnocchi into the simmering water and cook 3 to 4 minutes, until the gnocchi float freely on the surface.
- Drain and toss the gnocchi in a bit of butter or oil until ready to toss them with the following cheese sauce.
For the Stout Braised Short Ribs
- Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
- Season the short ribs with salt on all sides. Heat a large Dutch oven or braising dish, over medium-high heat. Add the oil to coat the pan.
- Arrange the short ribs in, they should immediately start to make a sizzling noise, and allow to brown on all sides, 2 to 3 minutes per side.
- Transfer to a plate and reduce heat to medium.
- Add the onion to the pan and allow to soften and brown, about 8 to 10 minutes.
- Add in the garlic and cook 30 seconds.
- Add the tomato paste, stirring to coat everything and cook 1 minute.
- Slowly whisk in the stout, scraping up any browned bits on the bottom of the pan as needed. Allow to simmer 1 to 2 minutes
- Pour in the beef broth, add the carrots, bay leaf and thyme. Arrange the short ribs over the bones, and any accumulated juices, back into the pan and cover.
- Place in the preheated oven and cook for 2 to 3 hours, rotating the covered pan every hour.
- Dispose of the bones, bay leaf, and cooked thyme. Allow to rest before serving.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste
For the Irish Cheese Sauce
- In a heavy bottomed pan, melt the butter over medium heat.
- Add the shallot, and cook, until softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Season with salt.
- Whisk in the flour and cook 1 to 2 minutes, whisking.
- Slowly, whisk in the stout, making sure no clumps form to make your roux.
- Stir in the Dijon mustard.
- Add the milk and keep stirring. Reduce the heat to medium low.
- A little at a time, stir in the cheese until melted.
- Season, to taste, with additional salt and pepper and fresh minced thyme.
- Toss the gnocchi in the Irish cheese sauce to coat.
- Ladle into serving dishes and set short ribs and braised carrots over the center of each.
- Garnish, if desired with fresh thyme, salt and pepper.