On your mark: Farm-to-Table Short Rib Pot Pie

Farmer K.'s beef short ribs, dredged in flour, salt & pepper, browning in safflower oil

K. is the farmer up the road that helps hay our fields.  He also raises polled Herefords and we have been filling our freezer with his beef for the past few years.  We love having local beef and knowing that it is raised less than one mile away.  It is delicious and it all works out with bartering and a little cash to cover haying and turkeys-for-Thanksgiving.  I’m happy to not try to juggle raising them myself.  There is the right amount of fat on the cuts, the ground beef is very lean, and the flavor is just what you would hope for in local grass raised beef.  We have inadvertently become food snobs.

With such a wonderful arrangement, I can hardly complain that the beef can be a little, well, a lot, chewy...

Hence we labeled this flavorful beef the “athletic cow” meals.  There are a few hills where Keith’s beefers graze, just a few.  We jokingly credit this terrain for the texture of our steaks and roasts.  At the same time, we credit the land for the health of the livestock that live there and roam freely while leading a stress-free life in the country.  Well, I presume they are stress-free, but what do I know?

A nice recipe and a little time is all you need to magic the tenderness out of some of the cuts.  Tonight I have a meeting and wanted to leave a delicious dinner for the fam before I headed out the door.  I’ve been wanting to try short ribs this way for sometime and when the package fell out of the freezer and bruised my toes last night, I decided today would be the day.  Enjoy the step-by-step:

red onions from down the road and some sage from my front stoop

short ribs in the slow-cooker

pretty-as-a-picture sautéed onions and sage

Small Potatoes Farm fresh garlic makes an appearance

adding a little pumpkin ale to deglaze

all that juicy pumpkin ale/onion/sage goodness with the short ribs drippings mixed in

tipping the drippings and vegetables into the slow cooker to stew with the ribs

I soak the thinly sliced potatoes to wash off excess starch

filling of braised short ribs and "crust" of potato slices

brushing the tops before baking with a bit of the short ribs juice

bake the pot pies for 45 minutes at 350 degrees F.

Athletic pot pies that stick to your ribs!

This Post Has 7 Comments

  1. Oh my god, this looks heavenly!! So, the garlic and onions and sage were all discarded after you added the juice to the slow cooker? Erik came home with goose tonight – looks like I’m going to be doing some experimenting with cooking goose. I especially love the caption under the photo of the cows standing on the hillside. Were you being funny or was that a mistake??? I LOVE your blog, Tammy!! Thanks so much for sharing.

    1. Thanks so much, Kara! I did not discard the garlic, onions and sage. I actually included them on top of the ribs but I think my photo doesn’t reveal that so well. (I have to admit the challenge of trying to photograph “action shots” as one-handed pan-handling can be a little tricky!) And yes, I was being funny on that caption! Those are the cows that we have in our freezer(or at least, the one in our freezer used to be among them) and so it is nice to drive by and see how content and healthy our beef was in its other life!

      1. oh, and on the goose…let me know how it turns out! I love goose and have prepared it a couple of times. Once I brined it and once I did not – both times it was delicious.

  2. Dang that lools good. I have some athletic ribs (love the name!) in my freezer too! I’ll have to try it out!

    1. It was very tasty, Liz! My only complaint is that if I had spent a little more time separating the fat before putting it in the slow-cooker, it would’ve been quicker to prepare after it was cooked. I like for it to have some fat for cooking, but its a little tricky because of the cut of the ribs and the fat being in layers between the meat. It is definitely a meat & potatoes meal -I felt very British!

  3. I’ll bet there wasn’t anything chewy about that. Amazing photos. Boy are we ever on the same page. BTW, grass fed beef doesn’t need to be cooked as long unless you were braising tougher cuts like you were today. Robyn thinks some grass fed ground beef is a bit toothsome, but we are so conditioned to the other stuff we don’t know what the real thing is supposed to be like. If I can cook it a bit less time and maybe a bit more rare then it’s more tender. I’ll never eat mass produced corn fed beef again. Good on you.

    1. Thanks, Mark! Yes indeed, the meat fell off the bones(which my pups are enjoying very much today!) Thanks for the tip about the quicker cooking. The steaks tend to be “toothsome”, as you put it, and I often marinate to help break it down. But you are oh-so-correct in saying that we are conditioned. We’ve gotten so we can tell the difference not just by texture but also by taste. It is the same as store-bought eggs vs. farm-fresh eggs, like Wonder Bread vs. homemade-there is really no comparing the two.

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