For the short ribs:
5 pounds bone-in beef short ribs, cut crosswise into 2” pieces
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
2 T. vegetable oil
6 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
2 medium yellow onions, peeled and diced
3 medium carrots, peeled and diced
3 celery stalks,diced
¼ c. all-purpose flour
2 T. tomato paste
1 750ml bottle dry red wine, preferably an Oregon Cabernet Sauvignon
1 c. flat-leafparsley leaves, loosely packed, plus more for garnish
6 sprigs thyme
3 sprigs rosemary
2 bay leaves, fresh or dried
1 qt. low-sodium beef stock
For the polenta:
1 ½ c. medium- or finely-ground cornmeal
1 ½ t. kosher salt
¾-1 ¼ c. whole milk, room temperature
8 T. unsalted butter
Freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
[NOTE: There’s no arguing that this dish only gets better with time, so if you can, plan to make the short ribs a day ahead. Cooling overnight not only allows for maximum depth of flavor, but also makes it much easier to skim the fat from the sauce.]
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Generously season short ribs with salt and pepper and set aside. Heatvegetable oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat until shimmering. Working in batches, sear short ribs on all sides until golden brown, about 8 minutes per batch, transferring short ribs to a large platter once seared.
If necessary, pour off all but about ¼ cup drippings from pot, leaving any accumulated fond. Add garlic to pot andcook, stirring occasionally, until golden, 2-3 minutes. Remove to platter alongside short ribs, then add onions,carrots, and celery to the pot and cook, stirring frequently, until everything is softened and lightly golden, about 7minutes. Add flour and tomato paste and cook, stirring constantly, until everything is well combined and begins to take on a deep red color, 2-3 minutes more. Stir in the wine, then transfer short ribs back to the pot, along with any accumulated juices. Bring everything to a boil, reduce heat to medium, and simmer until wine is reduced byhalf, about 45 minutes. Add garlic back to pot, along with the parsley leaves, thyme, oregano, rosemary, and bay leaves, and stir in the beef stock. Bring to a boil, cover with a tight-fitting lid, and transfer to the oven. Cook untilshort ribs are tender and falling off the bone, 2 ½-3 hours.
In the last hour of cooking, prepare the polenta. In a large pot, bring 7 ½ cups water to a boil over medium-high heat.Add salt to water, then slowly whisk in cornmeal with a wooden spoon (it’s important to add the cornmeal slowly to avoid lumps!). Continue stirring until the mixture begins to thicken, 2-3 minutes, then reduce heat to low. Cook 30-40 minutes, stirring with a wooden spoon every 10 minutes, adding ¼ cup milk each time as necessary to keep polenta smooth and loose enough to stir, until grains are tender and creamy. Season to taste with salt and pepper,then cover and keep warm until ready to serve (if polenta begins to set, it can be loosened by stirring in theremaining milk just before serving).
When short ribs are finished braising, remove from oven. Using tongs, transfer meat to a platter, then remove anyherb stems and bay leaves from the sauce and discard. Skim any excess fat from the surface before using an immersion blender to puree the sauce. Season to taste with more salt and pepper if necessary, then serve with short ribs over polenta, garnished with parsley.