Nir Mesika’s braised short ribs with squash puree and roasted corn salad recipe


Nir Mesika is the founder and executive chef at Timna, a modern Israeli restaurant in New York that was dubbed the “best new restaurant of 2015” by USA Today.

Growing up in northern Israel, in Mesika’s family, Rosh Hashanah was all about his mother’s short ribs. What makes it special, he said, is that “the family was waiting for it all day long” so they could gather to “share it from the same pot on the center of the table.” This recipe, Mesika said, is a twist on his mother’s staple.

(Courtesy of Nir Mesika)

For the short ribs:
2 pounds short ribs, cut into individual ribs (3-inch pieces)
1 carrot, chopped
2 celery sticks, chopped
1 white onion, chopped
3 bay leaves
2 sticks cinnamon
3 cloves
1 bottle dry red wine
1 bunch fresh thyme
1 tablespoon silan date syrup
1 liter chicken stock 
(Note: can also substitute water)
2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
1 tablespoon olive oil

For the squash puree:

1 pound squash diced
3 sage leaves
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 tablespoon cumin
4 tablespoons olive oil

For the roasted corn salad:
2 yellow corn
1 red onion sliced
1 tablespoon ginger chopped
1 jalapeño pepper
1 teaspoon Sriracha sauce
1 bunch fresh cilantro
1 lime

For the short ribs:
1. Place a large pot on the stovetop over high heat and add the olive oil and grapeseed oil.

2. Season the short ribs well with fresh black pepper and kosher salt, place the meat in the pot and sear on each side until the short ribs develop a nicely browned, charred color.

3. Add the chopped carrots, onions and celery and caramelize well (about 5-10 minutes) until the vegetables are tender.

Add the red wine, spices and chicken stock.

5. After cooking for 10-15 minutes, add the silan and the fresh thyme, cover the pot and let simmer for 3 hours.

Remove the short ribs once they are falling-off-the-bone tender and let rest.

For the squash purée
1. Heat the oven to 375 degrees F.

2. In a bowl, mix the smoked paprika, cumin and olive oil together, then add the sage and diced squash.
 Season with salt and pepper to taste.

3. Place the mixture on a tray and put into the oven for about 40 minutes – until the squash is tender.

4. After the squash has cooled, put it in the blender and grind until the texture is smooth.
 Finish with salt, pepper and a touch of Tabasco sauce.

For the roasted corn salad
1. Butter the corn and coat with Sriracha sauce.

2. Place on a tray and roast in the oven at 375 F for 40 minutes, or until the corn develops a charred color.

3. Cut the kernels from the cobs with a sharp knife and place into a bowl.
 Add the ginger, sliced red onion, a few slices of jalapeño peppers, the juice from 1 lime, cilantro leaves, salt and pepper to taste, and a drizzle of olive oil; mix well.

To serve:
1. Begin plating by spreading the squash puree on the bottom of the plate.

2. Add the roasted corn salad.

3. Place a few pieces of short ribs on top, with a few spoonfuls of the jus from the stock in the pot.
 Finish with a drizzle of olive oil and fresh thyme.

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