By Fit ‘n' Lazy Foodie - Healthcare industry veteran, certified fitness professional, lazy gourmand, English-language-abuser, attention-monger, and overall corny, snarky punk, just trying to kick it healthy-ish style in Chicagoland
So, this week, I actually bring to you a recipe from a wicked dudetastic, fit, foodie friend of mine – we'll call him "Meaty." He's not quite as lazy about food prep as I am, but honestly, no one should be. Plus, he promised to give me an easy recipe for "ridiculously amazing short ribs", so he doesn't blow up my spot in "lazy foodie" land. Also, I thought that you ladies out there that suffer through incessant fantasy football talk and nonstop game watching Thursday through Sunday would appreciate if your dudes actually made something wholesome for themselves, their friends, and hopefully, you! Cha cha cha!
Let me tell you about our pal "Meaty", first, who sent me this helpful, joking note along with his submission: "Feel free to introduce me as a charming and dynamic Renaissance man-type character". Haha, got it, Meaty – thanks! Couldn't have said it better myself, so here you go! Actually, this dude is indeed the quintessential, small town golden boy: football star, now runs his own law practice in a major city, and is even also a writer. And yes, I hear he can cook some darn good stuff, too, so before you hate him, know that he is one of the nicest, happiest guys around. Point being, he wants you to also be happy and eat awesome food, so check out his guide below:
"Meaty's Cut" – Lazy Sunday Short Ribs
Two simple truths:
• If you're an adult mammal (or at least pretending to be) you should be able to cook. No excuses. I'm not talking about boiling spaghetti or throwing something you got at Trader Joe's in the oven. I mean really cook. Your ancestors helped your DNA fight and scrape and claw to the top of the food chain; now it's time to enjoy it. This shouldn't be too hard.
• There's a dirty little secret about cooking. It's way easier to make something great than it is to make something mediocre. It takes about 12 ingredients (and an hour of your time) to make a casserole that tastes like anything close to something you'd want to voluntarily eat. On the other hand, it takes 3 ingredients to make a succulent, roast chicken that falls off the bone (and the oven does most of the work).
The biggest hurdle in the kitchen for most of us, is that recipes are intimidating and needlessly complex. Four 6oz chicken breasts cut into cubes? 3 tablespoons of salt? I don't know what those measurements really mean, and I don't really want to. The secret to figuring out how much meat to use is to decide how much meat you want to eat and then just get that amount. If something isn't as salty as you'd like it to be, add more. It's pretty darn simple. Also, I don't want a list of ingredients or a lot of unnecessary background, just tell me what to actually do.
Keeping it simple:
1. Go to a butcher shop. Ask for as many short ribs as you would like to serve. Ask your butcher to cut them into halves or quarters. [Side Note: Your relationship with a good butcher is the most important relationship in your culinary life.]
2. Buy a bag of carrots (and a veggie peeler if you don't have one).
3. Buy a cheap bottle of red wine.
4. Buy some beef stock.
Go home. Pour yourself 1-2 glasses of wine and get to work:
1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
2. Grab a Dutch oven or whatever you may have that is similar (like a larger pot or a large oven-safe skillet.) Drizzle some oil into it.
3. Put the short ribs into Dutch oven or whatever you're using.
4. Peel the carrots and break them in half. Throw them in the pot.
5. OPTIONAL: If you're feeling frisky, chop some onions, celery and garlic and throw them into the pot as well. Don't sweat this. No one has even complained about not having enough celery. Vegetables are basically just annoying nutrients.
6. Pour beef stock into the pot until the short ribs are ¼ of the way covered.
7. Pour the red wine into pot until the short ribs are ½ of the way covered.
8. Sprinkle some salt and pepper into the pot. Less is more. You can always add more later.
9. Cover and throw in the oven. Let it cook for 3-4 hours (feel free to ballpark this as you can't really mess up slow cooking).
10. Drink the rest of the red wine.
11. Take it out of the oven and voraciously consume with friends and loved ones.
Calories: Does it really matter?
This should take about 15 minutes total of actual work. In a few hours, you'll have a gourmet dish with hunks of gorgeous red meat sliding off the bone, delicious enough to impress your friends, your mom, and yes, the ladies.
You're a grown up. You should be able to feed yourself and your friends. Keep it simple and enjoy.
Well said, my meaty friend, well said. Now you all can make this dish, and also be my meaty friends. And make your own meaty friends, too.
Now, I do have to put my own "Fit n Lazy Foodie" note, that short ribs are a fattier cut of meat, and shouldn't be an everyday indulgence. But when you do indulge, enjoy the flipping heck out of them, since they're better for you than that pizza you slog down by halftime on game day, anyway. As a bonus, Meaty also notes that you can steam and puree some cauliflower with butter and a couple strips of bacon to round out a nice, low-carb, manly, meaty meal.
Questions? Suggestions? Virtual high-fives? Look at dumb, funny, food-related pictures? Get random tips and recipes? Check out my Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/FitLazyFoodie