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Pappardelle with Short Rib Ragu

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Cold-weather recipes galore! And compliments galore, because I was told by a stepson that this is the best recipe I have ever made. I will take that.

The recipe is Bobby Flay’s Pappardelle with Short Rib Ragu, a new cold-weather classic for us. This is not a quick weeknight get-it-on-the-table dinner, but a Sunday project that simmers all afternoon and results in a happy table come dinner time. Warm and substantial, rich and deeply flavorful. Paired with thick pappardelle pasta, this is winter comfort food at its best. A perfect January Sunday supper.

Bobby Flay’s Pappardelle with Short Rib Ragu

Bobby Flay’s Pappardelle with Short Rib Ragu is warm and substantial, rich and deeply flavorful. This is winter comfort food at its best. 

Pappardelle with Short Rib Ragu
Very slightly adapted from Bobby Flay’s recipe

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 ½ to 4 pounds short ribs, each about 2-inches long
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
4 small carrots, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1 medium onion, diced
2 medium shallots, diced
1 tablespoon flour
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 ½ cups red wine, such as cabernet
1 dried bay leaf
4 sprigs fresh rosemary
10 sprigs fresh thyme
4 sprigs flat-leaf parsley
½ head garlic, cloves separated, peeled, and gently smashed
3 ½ cups beef broth
1 pound pappardelle or other long, flat pasta
Chopped parsley for garnish
Grated pecorino romano for garnish

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Place a 5-quart Dutch oven or casserole over medium-high heat. Add the oil, and heat until it is almost smoking. Season the short ribs generously with salt and pepper. Working in batches, add the short ribs to the hot oil. Use tongs to turn the ribs so that they brown on all sides. Remove the ribs from the casserole and transfer to a large bowl. Set aside.

Add the carrots, celery, onion, and shallots to the casserole and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are soft and golden, about 10 minutes. Stir in the flour and tomato paste, then stir in the wine using a wooden spoon to scrape up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the bay leaf, rosemary, thyme, parsley, garlic, and beef broth. Return the ribs to the casserole. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cover and place in the oven. Cook until the ribs are very tender, about 3 hours.

Remove the ribs from the casserole. Set the casserole on the stove over medium heat, and simmer to thicken the sauce slightly, about 5 minutes. When the short ribs are cool enough to handle, remove the meat from the bones and shred it into small pieces, discarding any pockets of fat. Degrease the sauce and remove the thyme, rosemary, and bay leaf. Return the shredded meat to the casserole, and simmer over medium heat to reduce the sauce by about half. This should take about 10 minutes.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil and season with a tablespoon of kosher salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, then add the pasta. Cook for 8 minutes, or until the pasta is al dente. Drain and serve topped with the short rib ragu. Sprinkle with parsley and grated pecorino romano.

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