Chanuka, Main courses

Braised Beef Short Ribs with Red Wine Reduction: The Right Sort of Roast for Chanukah

braised beef short ribs with mashed potatoes

Everyone knows about having latkes for Chanukah, how these potato pancakes symbolize the miracle of the oil lasting for 8 days, just long enough to get some more of the right kind of oil to rededicate the Temple in Jerusalem. But there is a further custom among many to eat fatty meat for the same reason: as a way of commemorating the Chanukah miracle of the oil.

Wine Braised Boneless Short Ribs

Yield: at least 8 servings


  • 4 boneless beef short ribs
  • ¼ cup flour
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or schmaltz
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 large onion, quartered
  • 1 celery rib, cut into one-inch pieces
  • 1 large carrot, cut into one-inch pieces
  • 1 cup wine
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 short sprig fresh rosemary
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Mince garlic in food processor. Add onion, celery, and carrot and pulse until roughly chopped.
  2. Sift the flour together with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ pepper over a dinner plate. Dredge beef in this seasoned flour.
  3. Heat oil a wide, deep, stove-to-oven pan, such as a Dutch oven, over high heat until hot. Add beef in batches, leaving plenty of room between ribs, and brown until dark golden brown on all sides. Remove beef and add chopped vegetables to pan. Sauté vegetables until beginning to brown.
  4. Preheat oven to 350° F
  5. Add wine to vegetables and reduce the liquid in the pan by half.
  6. Add tomato paste, chicken stock, thyme, rosemary, and bay leaf.
  7. Return beef to pan, cover tightly, and place in oven. Cook for two hours or until beef is tender when tested with a meat fork, but not falling apart.
  8. If desired, place beef on a platter and strain the sauce to remove the vegetables. Return the liquid to the pan and reduce until thickened, as desired.