I like traditional holiday dinners. The familiar smells and tastes of special meals served to special family. But sometimes I'm just chickened or brisketed out. So when I found The Pioneer Woman's recipe for short ribs, I almost plotzed with delight!
Flanken ... short ribs ... same difference. I thought each was a ribbon of ribs cut across the bones, about 4-5 or so little ribs in each length, as opposed to normal ribs, cut between each bone.
Until this week:
Lemme tell you, 2 per of these little things is just an h'ordeuvre. I think the butcher had a pile of tiny riblets to get rid himself of and had a bright idea to package and rename them. But since he was sold out of flanken, I bought 3 packages of this instead. The end result was still very good, as you will see in the photos later, but I think the presentation would be better with flanken ribs so flanken became the recipe name.
The original recipe roasts the mushrooms. I saw no reason to crank up the oven for one package of 'shrooms, so I sauteed them, similar to the way I made them for chicken marsala, except with just wine and a little pepper. The original cream, of course, had to go. I subbed with soy milk because that's all I had. If you have a better parve/vegan pseudo-cream, feel free to use it (just please let me know in the comments what you used so I can try it as well).
Serve optionally with rice. Which theHubby suggested just as we sat down to dinner.
Flanken with Wine and "Cream"
adapted from: The Pioneer Woman
Yield: 4 servings, 2 complete flanken ribs per person
8 flanken ribs (also known as short ribs)
1/2 tsp. kosher salt (optional)
3/4 tsp. coarsely ground pepper, divided
3 Tbl.olive oil, divided
1 1/2 cup Marsala (or your favorite red) wine, divided
3 cups beef broth
2 large sprigs rosemary
2 Tbl. mustard (coarsely ground style)
1 cup soy milk
2 Tbl. capers
1 package (10-12 oz.) mushrooms (white or baby bella)
12 small rosemary sprigs for garnish (optional)
Cooked rice, enough for your family (optional)
Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large heavy pot over high heat. Sprinkle flanken ribs on each side with salt (if desired) and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Sear ribs about 2 minutes per side. Remove to a covered dish; keep warm.
Remove leaves from rosemary stem; finely chop or scissor the rosemary, then add to the pot along with 1 cup wine and beef broth. Stir to combine over medium-high heat, scraping along the bottom to deglaze (brings up all those yucky-looking but delicious browned bits).
When broth mixture begins to boil, return flanken to the pot, reduce heat to low, then cover and keep at a bare simmer for 2 1/2 hours (boiling will make the meat tough).
Towards the end of the long simmer, the meat should be falling off the bone.
Remove flanken ribs to a clean covered dish. Stir in mustard, soy milk, and capers, then raise the heat and gently boil for 10 minutes or until sauce has thickened slightly to your liking. Return ribs to sauce; cover and shut off heat (but leave on burner) for a few minutes to finish the cooking by residual heat while you make the mushroom.
Cut the mushrooms into quarters. Add remaining olive oil to a small saute pan. Heat over medium-high heat, then add mushrooms (pan will look too full).
Carefully stir; after 5 minutes the mushroom will begin to shrink as they give up their liquid. Continue to stir frequently until the liquid evaporates, another 5-8 minutes.
When all the liquid is gone, add the remaining wine, sprinkle with remaining pepper, and continue stirring frequently for a few minutes until all the wine is absorbed. Remove from heat.
Place 2 flanken ribs on each plate. Divide mushrooms evenly over ribs. Garnish with rosemary sprigs, if desired. Optionally serve with rice.