The barbecue season is upon us – weather permitting – so Guy Awford creates a tantalizingly tasty smoked beef short rib BBQ recipe to help us make the most of it
Smoked beef short ribs are the ultimate barbecue treat and luckily for us they are available in Greenwich from Drings Butchers. The ribs are cut from 14-day aged beef, and they are lightly cured in a herb & spice brine to intensify the flavour and hydrate the meat. The ribs are then cold smoked for 12 hours over apple and beech wood, and then air-dried overnight.
The smoked ribs now need to be cooked long and slow; this breaks down the collagens into gelatin, creating meltingly tender meat. Scatter the aromatics into a large oven tray and then place the ribs on top in a single layer. Pour in enough ale to come half way up the sides of the ribs. Cover tightly with foil and cook at 150°C for three hours (cook the ribs in advance and press under a light weight overnight; the even thickness will make it far easier to control the cooking on the BBQ).
The smoked ribs now need to be cooked long and slow; this breaks down the collagens into gelatin, creating meltingly tender meat
Remove from the oven and leave the ribs to cool in the liquid. At this stage you should refrigerate the ribs if you’re not going to barbecue them immediately. Pass the cooking liquor through a sieve and reduce until it reaches a glaze. Stir in a tablespoon of honey and a teaspoon of mustard.
When the barbecue is ready brush the ribs with the glaze and grill, turning frequently, until golden brown. The ribs are now ready. They have been aged, cured, smoked, air dried, slow cooked and charcoal grilled. It’s admittedly a long process, but when you tuck into these moist, smoky, sticky and incredibly satisfying bad boys, you’ll be so pleased you (and Drings) made such an effort.
- 4 smoked beef short rib – about 500g each
- About 2 pints of ale
- Aromatics – 2 bay leaf, large sprigs of thyme, pinch fennel seeds, pinch cumin seeds
For the chipotle relish
- 250g ripe tomatoes – chopped
- 1 clove garlic – smashed
- ½ inch ginger – grated
- 2 red chilies – diced & seeds removed
- 150g caster sugar
- 2 chopped chipotle chilies
- 50ml red wine vinegar
- Slow cook the ribs in advance and before barbecuing, as outlined above.
- Place all the relish ingredients in a heavy-based saucepan.
- Bring to the boil, reduce to a simmer and cook for about 30 minutes. The mixture should have turned dark and sticky. It makes more than you’ll need, so store the rest in sterilised jars.
- To make a fresh summer slaw place some finely sliced cabbage, grated carrot, pomegranate, lemon zest, mint and coriander in a large bowl.
- Dress with a light olive oil and a few squeezes of lemon juice and then season. Toss together and taste.