Braised Beef Short Ribs


1/4 cup olive oil
6 pounds beef short ribs, on the bone, cut into 4 portions
fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 large onion, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 celery stalk, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped, optional
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 cup red wine
3 cups low-sodium, store-bought beef broth
Bouquet garni: 3 rosemary sprigs, 3 thyme sprigs, and 3 oregano sprigs, tied in a cheesecloth
1/2 cup Pommery mustard
1/2 cup honey


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F
  2. Pour the oil into a wide, deep-sided saute pan and heat it over medium-high heat. Season the short ribs with salt and pepper, add them to the pan, and brown them all over, about 4 minutes per side. Transfer the ribs to a large casserole or roasting pan.
  3. Add the onion, carrots, and celery to the saute pan and cook for 5 minutes to lightly caramelize them. Add the jalapeno, garlic, tomato paste, wine, and broth to the pan. Bring the mixture to a rapid boil, then pour it over the ribs in the casserole. The liquid should not rise more than two-thirds up the side of the ribs and the ribs should not be entirely submerged. If you have extra liquid, maybe your casserole is too small and the ribs are too tightly packed; try dividing the ribs and liquid among two casseroles.
  4. Put the casserole in the oven, add the bouquet garni, and braise the ribs for about 1½ hours. Pierce the ribs with the tines of a fork, if cooked enough, the fork will meet no resistance.
  5. Remove the casserole from the oven and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes before transferring the ribs to a plate or platter. Degrease the braising liquid, strain it, discard the solids, and reduce and reserve the juices for serving. The short ribs can be cooled, covered, and refrigerated for 1 to 3 days. Let come to room temperature before proceeding.
  6. Prepare an outdoor grill with a drip pan to prevent flare-ups or preheat the oven to 350°F.
  7. Combine the mustard and honey in a bowl and liberally brush over the ribs. Grill or cook the ribs in the oven for 10 minutes, turning once, until the glaze is caramelized, dark, and delicious. If grilling, brush on more glaze as the ribs cook.
  8. Serve the ribs family style, passing the reduced braising liquid alongside in a sauce-boat.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Nightly Special

In Pictures: 16-course Dinner of Noma’s Pop-up Restaurant in Japan

Unripe Strawberries + Sake Lees

Botanebi + Flavours of Nagano Forest

Citrus and Long Pepper

Shaved Monkfish Liver

Koika Cuttlefish “Soba”


Sea Urchin and Wild Kiwi

Tofu, Simply Steamed with Wild Walnuts

Scallop, Dried for Two Days with Beech Nuts and Kelp

Hokkari Pumpkin, Cherry Wood Oil, and Salted Cherry Blossoms

Garlic Flower

Roots and Starches with Ginger

Wild Duck and Matsubusa Berries

Yeast and Turnip Cooked in Shitake

Sweet Potato Simmered in Raw Sugar All Day

Wild Cinnamon and Fermented Mushroom

Mushroom Juice

Sunday Funnies

Cannibals and Other Humanitarians

An astronomer is on an expedition to Darkest Africa to observe a total eclipse of the sun, which will only be observable there, when he’s captured by cannibals.

The eclipse is due the next day around noon. To gain his freedom he plans to pose as a god and threaten to extinguish the sun if he’s not released, but the timing has to be just right.

So, in the few words of the cannibals’ primitive tongue that he knows, he asks his guard what time they plan to kill him.

The guard’s answer is, “Tradition has it that captives are to be killed when the sun reaches the highest point in the sky on the day after their capture so that they may be cooked and ready to be served for the evening meal.”

“Great”, the astronomer replies.

The guard continues, though, “But because everyone’s so excited about it, in your case we’re going to wait until after the eclipse.”

* * * * * * * *

Two cannibals met one day in the jungle:

“I went up the river and got me a couple of Catholic monks the other day and brought them home and boiled them and they tasted terrible.”

“You boiled them?”

“Yeah, why?”

“Those are friars.”

* * * * * * * *

Two guys are captured by cannibals and they’re stuck naked in a big pot of water over a fire and the water gets hotter and hotter.

All of a sudden, one guy starts laughing, and the other guy says, “What’s so funny?”

“I just peed in their soup!”

Having A Purpose in Life May Improve Health of Aging Brain

Having a strong sense that your life has meaning and direction may make you less likely to develop areas of brain damage caused by blockages in blood flow as you age. This research is reported in the American Heart Association’s journal Stroke.

When a blockage interrupts blood flow in a vessel within the brain, a stroke can result or brain tissue can be damaged. This damaged tissue, called infarcts, may contribute to dementia, movement problems, disability, and death as people age.

“Mental health, in particular positive psychological factors such as having a purpose in life, are emerging as very potent determinants of health outcomes,” said Patricia Boyle. Ph.D., study co-author and associate professor of behavioral sciences at the Rush Alzheimer’s Disease Center of Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. “Clinicians need to be aware of patients’ mental state and encourage behaviors that will increase purpose and other positive emotional states.”

Researchers analyzed autopsy results on 453 people, average age 84, who volunteered for the Rush Memory and Aging Project and underwent annual physical and psychological evaluations until they died, at an average age of 90. None of the participants had known dementia when they started the study and all participants had agreed to organ donation at death.

Among the participants, 114 had clinically diagnosed stroke. At autopsy, researchers found:

  • Nearly twice that many had macroscopic infarcts (visible to the naked eye) or microinfarcts (visible with microscope) (47.7 percent).
  • Participants who had reported a stronger purpose in life were 44 percent less likely to have macroscopic infarcts. The study did not find a significant relationship between purpose in life and microinfarcts.
  • Adjusting for vascular disease risk factors, including blood pressure, physical activity, depression, and diabetes did not change the relationship between purpose in life and infarcts;
  • Purpose in life was most significant in small infarcts in the subcortical blood vessels supplying deep brain structures (lacunar infarcts);
  • The relationship between purpose in life and infarcts was not influenced by Alzheimer’s disease or clinically diagnosed stroke.

Although people’s scores on measures of purpose in life changed little during the course of the study, researchers believe that it can be improved.

“Purpose in life differs for everyone and it is important to be thoughtful about what motivates you, (such as volunteering, learning new things, or being part of the community) so you can engage in rewarding behaviors,” said Lei Yu, Ph.D., study lead author and assistant professor of neurological sciences at the Rush Alzheimer’s Disease Center.

Source: American Heart Association