Old School Coke Beef Short Ribs

Words: Crush

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Back in the day before the advent of bottled marinades, just about everyone’s Dad had a go to marinade recipe. This one is based on Dad’s old recipe and it’s got that sweet, sticky flavour that reminds you of countless summertime braais around the pool. To celebrate this Heritage Day we’re slathering it on some chunky beef short ribs and serving it with some good old fashioned corn on the cob.

Serves: 6
Difficulty: medium
Prep time:  45 minutes
Cooking time: 2 hours and 45 minutes

The marinade
knob of butter
1 large onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, finely diced
knob of ginger, finely grated
1 tsp (5 ml) dried rosemary
1 tsp (5 ml) dried thyme
1 tsp (5 ml) dried parsley
2 C (500 ml) Coke
¾ C (190 ml) tomato sauce
¾ C (190 ml) chutney
2 Tbsp (30 ml) soya sauce
juice of 1 lime

The ribs
6 large beef short ribs
salt and pepper
canola oil, for frying
5 cloves garlic
5 sprigs of thyme
6 C (1 ½ litres) good quality beef stock

The mielies
3 mielies, cut into quarters
100 g butter, melted
small handful of chives

The marinade
In a medium size saucepan over a medium heat, fry the onions in the knob of butter until they soften and begin to colour. Add the garlic and ginger and fry for another minute. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir well to combine. Bring the saucepan to the boil then turn down the heat and simmer for 20 minutes until the marinade thickens.

The ribs
Preheat the oven to 180 °C.

Season the beef well with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a high heat. Sear the beef, two pieces at a time, until you have a seared crust on all sides. This step is crucial for flavour so don’t rush it! Take your time and sear the meat as you would a steak. The better the crust the better the flavour.

Place the garlic and thyme into a large roasting tray and arrange the ribs on top. Add the stock until the ribs are almost half covered. Seal tightly with heavy duty foil and braise in the oven for 2 hours. At the 2 hour mark, check the ribs and if they are not fork tender then braise for a further 30-45 mins. When the ribs are fork tender remove them from the oven and allow to cool.

The mielies
In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, boil the mielies in salted water for 10 minutes. Drain the water and add the butter and chives to the saucepan. Toss to coat the mielies and set aside.

To serve
Remove the ribs from cooking liquid and paint with the marinade. Finish over the braai or grill to caramelise the marinade. Remember to baste as you turn the ribs to build up a sticky caramelised crust. Finish the mieles over a hot braai or grill to give them some colour. Serve and enjoy!

Check out our other Heritage classics here: Vetkoek Steak Sliders |  Coconut Condensed Milk Tart |  Peri Peri Chicken Livers

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