Our tour across the East Coast may be over, but the flavors we soaked up during our visit there are not. One of the parts of the trip I was looking forward to, was cooking with my dad. I would say that my cooking style is a 50-50 split of both of my parents. They’re both ridiculously good at feeding their people. As they say, I’m #blessed.
Ironically, I grew up vegetarian. It was a conscious choice made by my parents for health reasons, and I love having the repertoire of vegetarian recipes those years left with me. But, y’all if I’m being honest…meat is delicious. When we first started eating it as a family, I remember thinking that my dad had been keeping this big secret from us all his life, because he is SO GOOD at cooking meat. Specifically grilling.
So on our last leg of the trip when we stopped in Fort Worth, I had one request: to see how he marinated his short ribs. Oh gracious, how I do love short ribs. I think so many times when we think about eating red meat, it’s all about fanciness and fuss and flair, but some of the most delicious cuts are the cheap ones. Short ribs are one of my favorite cheap cuts of meat. Years ago when I first started eating meat, I would use a fork and knife for everryyything. Including chicken wings (it. took. forever. to. eat. y’all.). I have come a longgg way in my carnivorous cravings though, and one of my favorite meals during the summer are these short ribs. I love the messiness. I love that I can expect alllll the flavor. I love the char.
Before our trip East though, I was just seasoning them with salt. Thinking that was all they needed. But I stand corrected. My dad schooled me, and this recipe is probably gonna be one of my favorite adult lessons.
Here is what makes these great
You would never in a million zillion years expect any of these ingredients to go together. I remember when I lived in Italy the chef at our school said you should never cook with onions and garlic in the same dish, because they were like two divas fighting over your tastebuds. Here is what this recipe does: it combines about 50 divas in the same room and they’re battling it out to win over your tastebuds. The thing is, these divas, they have more in common than they think, and together their flavors marry to p e r f e c t i o n.
One of the more interesting tidbits my dad gave me on this trip, was to use some of my garlic peel in my marinades. In proper daughter form, I didn’t totally listen to what he had to say about it because it sounded kind of weird to me. I think he said it absorbs some of the acidity if you get a little carried away with lime juice or something, but then I did my own research and it turns out we should all be doing this! Isn’t it wild how much more right your parents get as you get older?
All this time I’ve been throwing away my garlic peels, and it turns out they not only pack a little extra flavor BUT they’re also packed with antioxidants. Do a quick google search, and see for yourself. As for me, I’ll be adding garlic peels to my stock and marinades from here on out.
A few notes about preparing your meat
I am the guiltiest when it comes to cooking on the fly. You guys. I’m literally SO impatient sometimes. That having been said, your body, soul and tastebuds will love you so much more if you take the time to marinate your meat. Especially with cheaper cuts of meat, you don’t want to skip this step. You need to give it time to absorb flavor + tenderize.
I’ve found that one of the best times for me to prepare meat is after dinner. You have to clean up the kitchen anyways, and in my case, I knowww I’m not going to take the time to prepare the meat in the morning. Setting aside about 10 minutes to make a marinade for your meat the night before cooking it gives it the perfect amount of time to take in all the flavor, and then you don’t have to worry about it the next day!
One Final Note
These short ribs are H E A V E N in your mouth when they’ve been grilled. There is nothing like a good sear from a grill. But if you don’t have a grill, you can still make these! You can cook them in a standard cast iron pan (cook at high heat at first for your sear to be nice and crisp), or you can invest in a grill pan. I have a Le Creuset grill pan that Ben bought me for my birthday when we still lived in an apartment (he’s the very bestttt), but I love all my pans (I have 4!) from Lodge, so I’m sure this grill pan works lovely for those of you living in tight spaces, or with no access to a grill. You’ll probably want to have a cast iron cleaner on hand though, as the grill pans need a little extra love when cleaning because food likes to get wedged in between the ridges.
I don’t think I need to show or tell you anything else about these ribs after this picture, because they speak for themselves. Now what are you waiting on? Go grab your ingredients (I would buy a healthy few lbs of short ribs because you’re going to want seconds…and maybe thirds) and get to work!
love & parents that are always right,