Laura Frankel is the executive chef of Wolfgang Puck’s restaurant in the (Jewish) Spertus Museum in Chicago. She was the founder and co-owner of Shallots, recognized as one of the top restaurants in Chicago and one of the best kosher restaurants in the United States. After working in hotel and restaurant kitchens, Frankel had a family and began maintaining a kosher home kitchen. Unable to find a restaurant venue for quality kosher cooking, she opened Shallots in 1999, a restaurant offering kosher fine dining with a produce-driven menu. She has appeared on the CBS Weekend Morning Show, and in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and the Chicago Tribune. She has taught cooking classes in Chicago, New York, Milwaukee, and in multiple places in California and New Jersey. Her website is

Falling Off the Bone Short Ribs

5 pounds beef short ribs
Olive oil
3 tablespoons dried thyme
2 tablespoons dried rosemary
¼ cup dried porcini dust*
¼ cup flour
3 ribs celery, chopped
2 large Spanish onions, peeled and chopped
3 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 bulb fennel (white part only) chopped
6 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
2 cups red wine, I prefer Cabernet Sauvignon
3 tablespoons tomato paste
3 cups chicken stock (see recipe, page)
Bouquet garni of 1 bay leaf, 6 thyme sprigs, 6 parsley stems, 1 rosemary sprig

1.Place the short ribs in a large stockpot filled with water and bring to a boil. Boil the short ribs for 5 minutes and drain. (This helps remove the fat).

2.Pat dry the ribs thoroughly. Season the ribs with salt and pepper.

3.Combine the dried thyme, rosemary, porcini dust and flour in a bowl.

4.Place a large sauté pan over medium heat. Lightly coat the bottom of the pan with olive oil. Dredge the ribs in the porcini mixture. Brown the ribs in batches until the ribs are browned on all sides. Transfer the ribs to the insert for the slow cooker.

5.Pour off the excess fat from the pan. You only need a small amount of fat. Brown the vegetables in batches making sure to season each batch with salt and pepper. Add the garlic to the last batch of vegetables and continue cooking for several minutes. Do not over brown the garlic.

6.Transfer the browned vegetables to the insert for the slow cooker. Add the wine to the pan with the tomato paste. Stir together to break up the tomato paste and deglaze the pan. Be sure to gather the browned bits by gently scraping the pan with a spatula or spoon.

7.Transfer the wine to the insert for the slow cooker. Add the chicken stock and bouquet garni. Cover and cook on LOW for 10 hours.

8.Remove the short ribs from the insert and set aside. Separate the vegetables and bouquet garni. Discard the vegetables. Pour the braising liquid into a saucepan. Skim the fat off the liquid and reduce over high heat by ½ or until the liquid is thick and coats the back of a spoon. Place the ribs on a platter and pour the sauce over the ribs.

9.Serve with creamy grits (see recipe, page) or smashed white beans with roasted garlic.


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