Here's my very simple 4-step process to prepare this dish (serves about 4 people):
3-4 large beef short ribs
1 medium yellow onion
4 garlic cloves
6-7 medium carrots
2-3 whole celery stalks
1/4 mushrooms of your choice
half a bunch of large kale, or 1 package of baby kale
2-3 fresh bay leaves
2 (each) sprigs of fresh rosemary and thyme
1/2 -1 cup red wine (optional)
Fresh parsley (for garnish)
STEP 1: Season short ribs generously with salt and pepper. In a large dutch oven, brown all sides of the meat evenly over medium high heat in 1-2 tablespoons of oil, for about 3-4 minutes per side. Remove meat from pot and let rest in a bowl.
STEP 2: Peel and chop all vegetables you are using. (I chop our celery, onions and garlic finely, but leave the carrots in very large chunks so they retain more flavor during the long cooking process.) Saving kale until later, add all others vegetables to the pot. Season well and stir over medium heat in the grease of the short ribs, about 3-4 more minutes.
STEP 3: Add the meat back into the pot. Add fresh herbs, wine and enough water to almost cover short ribs. Cover and simmer over low heat for about 2.5to 3 hours, checking occasionally if more liquid is needed. If so, add a little more water so that short ribs cook evenly and don't dry out.
STEP 4: Add kale to stew and continue simmering , uncovered, for another 30-45 minutes, until meat is falling off the bone. (Liquid will reduce during this process leaving you with a rich sauce to serve meat with).
Garnish with fresh parsley, and serve hot over rice, barely, polenta, mashed potatoes, butternut squash or other starch of your choice. Personally, I like to add a healthy drizzle of hot sauce to my own plate, for an extra punch. On a bitter cold winter day, this mouthwatering, heartwarming dish is very hard to beat in my book. And happily, even kids agree.