In this French-Canadian classic, freshly made fries are smothered in a rich, long-simmered short rib gravy and dotted with cheese curds. This recipe definitely takes some time (the short ribs braise for 3 hours) but your commitment is rewarded with some of the best munchies food you will ever taste.
Game plan: You can make the gravy ahead of time, cool it to room temperature, then refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
- Yield: 6 to 8 servings
- Difficulty: Medium
- Total: 4 hrs 25 mins
- Active: 45 mins
For the short rib gravy:
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 pounds bone-in beef short ribs
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 cups brown ale or lager beer
- 3 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth, plus up to 1/2 cup more as needed
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 recipes freshly made French Fries
- 8 ounces cheese curds or shredded cheddar
- Heat the oven to 350°F and arrange a rack in the lower third. Add the olive oil to a Dutch oven or heavy saucepan with a tightfitting lid over high heat. Season the ribs all over with salt and pepper, add them to the pan in a single layer (work in batches if necessary), and sear, turning occasionally, until the ribs are deep brown all over, about 15 minutes total. Transfer to a platter and set aside.
- Reduce the heat to medium and add the onion to the Dutch oven. Season with a pinch of salt and cook until browned and softened, about 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic and tomato paste and cook for 1 minute, stirring, then add the ale, 2 cups of the chicken broth, and the thyme and rosemary sprigs. Scrape the bottom of the pan to dislodge any browned bits, bring to a boil, and add back the short ribs. Cover with aluminum foil and the lid and place in the oven. Braise until the meat is very tender, about 3 hours.
- While the short ribs are cooking, make a roux. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, for 2 minutes to cook off the taste of raw flour. Remove the saucepan from the heat and set aside.
- When the short ribs are done, use a slotted spoon to transfer the meat to a platter. Remove the herb sprigs and discard them. With a large metal spoon, skim some of the fat from the top of the braising liquid.
- Return the Dutch oven to the stovetop over medium heat, add the remaining 1 1/2 cups of chicken broth, and bring to a gentle simmer. Whisk in the reserved roux a little at a time until the braising liquid thickens into a gravy. (If it seems too thick, add a bit more chicken broth.) Gently simmer the gravy, whisking occasionally, about 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, remove the bones from the short ribs along with excess fat and gristle and shred the meat into small, bite-size pieces. Add the meat to the gravy. Season with pepper, taste, and add more salt if needed.
- To serve, pile freshly made french fries in individual serving bowls. Sprinkle with cheese curds and top with as much gravy as you like (you will probably have more gravy than you need for this recipe). Serve right away with beer or red wine.