12.07.2011

Short Rib Lasagna

I know that you should never start with an apology. But I have to apologize, my short rib lasagna is SOooOoOOoo delicious that I don’t have any shots of it complete, it tends to get gobbled up immediately after cooking, sometimes even during.
Here is a picture of me holding complete mini short rib lasagna, it’s covered with foil, but I promise it’s in there. You should also note, I am also in a limo bus. My little cousin Issa, who is actually not that little he is most certainly a beast and I have a broken rib to prove it, and all he did was hug me. So… my little cousin got back from his first/hopefully only deployment in Iraq and the whole family went to pick him up from the airport. We needed a limo bus, obviously. To make it even more dramatic, I was  coming from a different direction on BART and when I found out that my train was going to get to the airport an hour late, my family gave me a hard time, saying they weren’t going to wait for me and I should just go home. Remember, I had a plate of short rib lasagna on my lap the whole time, and a purse full of beer courtesy of my uncle. As I was in the tunnel under the SF bay holding back tears my family was pulling some crazy Lebanese connections and by the time the train surfaced I had a text message that said “get off at the next station, there’s a limo waiting for you”.
Are you kidding me?? I run down the escalator in heels with lasagna and spot a white limo with maroon interior, the driver is short and bald with a huge mustache, I know this is my guy. I kiss him and hop in the back. Fifteen minutes later we are pulling up to the limo bus and I jump out and we rush off to meet Issa’s plane. We had huge banners and everyone in the baggage claim chanting his name. It was amazing.
If you would like to have a little superfancy chef swag, you can make Issa’s Homecoming Short Rib Lasagna too.
Dredge three or four short ribs in flour and then brown them in a little oil. About five minutes on each side and set on a plate. They will look like this.
Soak the dried mushrooms in a little the beef broth. Depending how chunky you want the sauce you might want the chop down the softened dried mushrooms into smaller pieces.  
In the same pan you browned the short ribs; add a few tablespoons of olive oil and sauté the chopped onion, garlic, celery and carrots. After the vegetables are soft add the wine to deglaze the pan. Then add the mushrooms and stock, rosemary, tomato paste and coffee grounds. Let this mess simmer. Then add the short ribs, place in the oven at about 225° and let slow cook for about five hours. Dude, I know who wants to sit in the kitchen that long, you can put it in right before you go to bed if you want, but don’t burn your house down. After the short ribs are cooked and melty let them cool and then pull the meat off the bones and add back into the sauce. Put the pan on the stovetop and bring to a boil and let the sauce reduce to about half.

    2 Fresh Rosemary Sprigs
    1 Cup Chopped Crimini Mushrooms
    1 OZ Dried Porcini Mushrooms
    4 Bones Short Ribs
    1 cup Flour
    4 TB Olive Oil
    4 Carrots
    2 Celery Stalks
    1 Onion
    1 TS Tomato Paste
    2 TB Coffee Grounds
    2 cups Red Wine
    2 1/2 cups Beef Broth
    6 Garlic Cloves
Now if that wasn’t already sensory overload, it’s time to make the parmesan béchamel. This might be a little tricky, but it’s kind of like making gravy, you start with roux. What the heck is a roux? Simple, its equal parts flour and butter. Melt the butter and then whisk in the flour until the mixture turns a light golden brown, slowly stir in the milk and watch it thicken, after a few minutes melt in the cheese and sprinkle in nutmeg.

    5 TB Unsalted Butter
    1/4 cup Flour
    2 cups Whole Milk
    1 TS Nutmeg
    2 cups Freshly Grated Parmesan cheese
To make the lasagna layer both of these sauces with noodles. Start with the meat sauce so that everything doesn’t stick to the pan. Boys like meat, so I doubled up on meat sauce. Top with a few tablespoons of grated parmesan cheese so that the top will be bubbly and delicious. Bake for about 30 minutes in a 375° oven and try to let rest 15 minutes, or one BART – limo – limo bus hopping ride to your favorite soldier.
 

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