Pressure Cooker Short Ribs
Short ribs, braised until they are melt-in-your mouth pieces of beefy goodness, are one of my favorite meals. But they are a little finicky for a home cook.
*I had Michael Symon’s short ribs at Lola’s, years ago. It is one of the best meals I’ve ever had at a restaurant, and I’ve been working on my short ribs at home ever since.
Part of why they are so delicious is they are loaded with fat. When cooking short ribs, there has to be a plan to get rid of the fat, or the ribs and the sauce will be much too greasy. Once again, the pressure cooker comes to the rescue.
|Untrimmed vs trimmed short ribs|
Why pressure cook short ribs? First, they’re done with 25 minutes under pressure, instead of the 3 to 4 hours of simmering they would need. Pressure cooking seems to break down the collagen in the meat better as well – I like how tender the ribs are after pressure cooking.
*Thanks to the pressure cooker, all the collagen from the bones winds up in the sauce as well. The sauce, once it is defatted, is rich, luxurious, and full of beef flavor.
|Ready to sear|
Finally, there is the fat issue. The best way to get rid of all the extra fat is to cook the short ribs, then refrigerate them overnight in their sauce. The fat will come to the surface and congeal into an easily removed fat cap. This is where the shortened cooking time from the pressure cooker really comes in handy. I can make my short ribs in about an hour, end to end, the night before I want to serve them. I make them while I clean up tonight’s dinner, and they are ready to go for dinner tomorrow.
*Don’t have a pressure cooker? No problem. See the Variations section for non-pressure cooking options.
Recipe: Pressure Cooker Short Ribs
- Pressure Cooker (I use my Fagor Duo 10 Quart pressure cooker)
- Fat separator (You need a big one, at least 4 cups in size).
- Don’t have a pressure cooker? Replace step 3 with: Put the ingredients in a dutch oven and bring to a boil. Cover the dutch oven, and move to a 325°F oven. Cook in the oven for 2 to 3 hours, until the ribs are tender. Remove from the oven, and continue with step 4.
- As I said in my I love pressure cookers post, every pressure cooker works differently. Make sure you have read your pressure cooker manual before starting this recipe, so you know how to lock it, how to tell when it’s up to high pressure (15 PSI), and how to release the pressure when you’re done.
- Instead of browning the short ribs in two batches, I use two pans. I brown half in my pressure cooker, and half in my fry pan. Then, I saute the onions in the pressure cooker, while I heat up the chicken stock and wine in the fry pan. This loosens up the browned bits in the fry pan, so I get their flavor in the final stew. Also, the pressure cooker comes up to pressure quicker if you add boiling liquid, so I’m heating up my stock at the same time I’m sauteing my onion.
|Two batches, two pans|
What do you think? Questions? Other ideas? Leave them in the comments section below.
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