There are few dishes as comforting as a slow braised pot of beef short rib, cooked in red wine. Smoked paprika adds a delightful depth of flavour, and creates a deep colour that almost looks like dark chocolate. Buttery mashed potato makes the perfect companion. Comfort food galore!
(serves 6, prep/cooking time: 1 hour 15 minutes)
• 30 ml olive oil
• 1,2 kg beef short rib, cut into chunks
• salt & pepper
• 2 red onions, chopped
• 2 sprigs rosemary, stalks removed, chopped
• 2 teaspoons (10 ml) Dijon mustard
• 2 teaspoons (10 ml) flour
• 2 teaspoons (10 ml) smoked paprika
• 1/2 bottle red wine
• 6 large floury potatoes, cooked
• 1/2 cup milk
• 125 ml butter
• a handful of chopped Italian parsley, to serve
In a large heavy-based pot, heat the oil over high heat and brown the meat in batches, seasoning it with salt & pepper as you go. Set the meat aside.
Lower the heat, then add the onions & rosemary and fry until the onions are soft and golden. Add the mustard, flour and smoked paprika and stir well. Add the wine and bring to a simmer, then add the meat and all the juices back into the pot. Stir, cover and simmer over low heat for 1 hour.
In the meantime, make the mash: After cooking the potatoes, peel them, then use a masher to create a smooth fluffy mush. Add milk and butter as you go - the texture should be loose, but not runny. Season well with salt & pepper.
When the meat is really tender, remove it from the heat. Serve on a bed of mash, scattered with chopped parsley, with a glass of Spier 21 Gables Cabernet Sauvignon.
About the wine:
Red fruits, truffle and the typical Helderberg lead pencil and fynbos notes slowly unfurl on the nose. The palate is richly textured with cassis-laden tannins and black currant leaves, offering a sweet-sour freshness and elegant frame. Lush fruit, powerful tannins and an earthy complexity provide supreme balance leading to a long salty, sumptuous finish. Elegant and richly textured, the palate offers sweet-and-sour freshness with lush blackcurrant. The new oak is almost fully integrated and supports the finely tuned, dry tannins. A wine that will amply reward patient drinkers, the 2014 vintage will open up over the next few years, offering excellent drinking for a decade or more.
(Recipe: Ilse van der Merwe, Photography: Tasha Seccombe)