Each year, S&D Coffee & Tea invites culinary students from across the country to submit original recipes incorporating coffee and tea elements. This year, 10 students competed for the $10,000 cash prize in the S&D Culinary Challenge Final, held February 20 on the Johnson & Wales University campus. Sarah Rountree, a senior from Westport, Connecticut, took home the gold for her Cold Brew Coffee and Ancho Chile Braised Short Ribs recipe.
Cold Brew Coffee and Ancho Chile Braised Short Ribs
Yield: 6 servings
Prep and Cook Time: 2 1/2 hours
Ingredients for Short Ribs:
– 3 ancho chile peppers, dried, stemmed, seeded and roughly chopped
– 2 cups boiling hot water
– 6 bone-in beef short ribs
– 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
– Salt and pepper as needed
– 2 carrots, washed, peeled and chopped into ½ inch pieces
– 2 onions chopped into ½ inch pieces
– 2 stalks celery, washed and chopped into ½ inch pieces
– 5 cloves of garlic, crushed
– 2 tablespoons tomato paste
– 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce plus 1 tablespoon of the sauce
– 2 cups dry red wine
– 3 tablespoons brown sugar
– 8 cups brown veal or beef stock
– 1 1/2 limes, juiced (or approx. 3 tablespoons juice)
– 3 tablespoons S&D Toddy Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate
– 10 sprigs thyme
– 2 bay leaves
– 1 teaspoon salt plus more to taste
– 2 tablespoons butter
– 6 scallions, washed and julienned
Ingredients for Carrots and Pearl Onions:
– 18 carrots (with carrot greens), peeled and trimmed so greens are ¼ inch long
– 18 pearl onions, peeled
– 3 cups coffee grinds
– 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon butter
– 5 sprigs thyme
– 1 clove garlic, crushed
– ¼- ½ cup chicken stock
– Salt and pepper as needed
Ingredients for Grits:
– 2 cups water
– 2 cups milk
– 1 cup stone ground grits
– 1 ½ tsp salt
– 1 ½ cup Monterey jack cheese, shredded
– 4 tablespoons butter
Method of Preparation for Short Ribs:
1) If not using a pressure cooker, preheat oven to 350°F.
2) Soak the dried ancho chile peppers in 2 cups of boiling water for about 20 minutes or until softened.
3) While the chiles are soaking, heat the vegetable oil in a large pan or pressure cooker. Season the short ribs generously with salt and pepper and sear on all sides until brown.
4) Once brown, remove short ribs from pan and sauté carrots, onions and celery in remaining oil until brown and caramelized. Add garlic until golden brown.
5) Add tomato paste and cook until caramelized, about 3 minutes.
6) Add chipotle pepper and adobo sauce, followed by the red wine to deglaze the pan.
7) Add brown sugar, beef or veal stock, lime juice, coffee concentrate, thyme, bay leaves, softened ancho chiles and salt.
8) Place short ribs back in pan and cover to cook in oven for about 3 hours or in the pressure cooker for 45 minutes, until tender.
9) While short ribs are cooking, prepare carrots, pearl onions and grits.
10) When the short ribs are done cooking and are fork-tender, remove them from the braising liquid and set to the side.
11) Strain the braising liquid through a chinois and into a saucepan. Cook over medium heat until liquid is reduced by half.
12) Once reduced, taste for seasoning and adjust as needed.
13) Before serving, turn off the heat and stir in 2 tablespoons of butter with a spoon until melted. Add the short ribs back into the sauce to glaze. Place on top of grits, carrots and pearl onions, spooning additional sauce over the top.
14) Add a garnish of julienned scallion greens over the short ribs.
Method of Preparation for the Carrots and Pearl Onions:
1) Preheat the oven to 200°F.
2) Place the carrots and pearl onions in a baking dish and coat completely in the coffee grinds.
3) Cook in oven for 30 minutes. (This will not actually cook the carrots and onions very much, just infuse the coffee flavor.)
4) Wash the grinds off the carrots and onions and hold on the side.
5) 7 minutes before plating, heat 1 tablespoon of butter in a large sauté pan over medium heat.
6) Add carrots and onions and sauté for 2 minutes.
7) Add thyme and garlic for flavor.
8) Once carrots and onions are golden brown, add chicken stock and cook until stock has cooked off and carrots are done, about 4-5 minutes.
9) Remove thyme and garlic and season with salt and pepper.
10) Remove from heat and add a teaspoon of butter to finish.
11) Place 3 carrots and 3 pearl onions on top of the grits on each plate.
Method of Preparation for the Grits:
1) Place water, milk, and salt in a pot over medium heat and bring to a boil.
2) Once boiling, add grits, cover and turn heat to low.
3) Cook for 20-25 minutes, stirring frequently.
4) Once grits are tender, remove from heat and stir in the cheese and butter.
5) Place ¾ cup of grits in the center of a plate and top with carrots, pearl onions, short ribs, and sauce. Garnish with julienned scallions.