Mourad Lahlou’s Moroccan Braised Short Ribs, Sauce And Aged Butter

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Ingredients for 4 servings

2 (3-bone plates) of short ribs, approximately 4 ½ lbs. total in weight

12 flat-leaf parsley sprigs

10 cilantro sprigs

Grapeseed or canola oil

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 (3-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and cut into 1/4 –inch slices

10 garlic cloves, peeled

2 ½ teaspoons ground cumin

½ teaspoon ground ginger

2 quarters of Preserved Lemons halved lengthwise, rinsed and seeds removed

8 cups beef stock, chicken stock, vegetable stock, or water

1 teaspoon of saffron threads

2 tablespoons Aged Butter or unsalted butter at room temperature

Fleur de sel and additional ground cumin, to finish the dish

Olive oil to taste



Heat oven to 250°F.


Remove the short ribs from the brine (discard the brine) and dry well with paper towels. Tie the parsley and cilantro sprigs together with kitchen twine.


Heat a film of oil in a roaster or Dutch oven, preferably enameled cast iron and oval-shaped, over medium-heat. Add short ribs meat side down and sear for about 4 minutes with tongs. Turn them over and brown for another 4 minutes. Lift the short ribs and brown each narrow side for about 1 minute. Remove from the pot and place on sheet pan with rack.


Melt the unsalted butter in pot, add the fresh ginger and garlic and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the cumin and ground ginger and stir for 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until fragrant.


Add the meat, bone-side down and pour in just enough stock to cover the meat (the bowed section of the meat may not be completely covered). Add the saffron, parsley and cilantro bundle and the preserved lemons.


Cover the meat with parchment lid, brush it with water to keep the edges from curling up and cover with the lid. Put in the oven and cook for about 4 hours, or until the meat is tender. Remove from oven and let the short ribs rest in the pot for 30 minutes.


Put cooling rack on a baking sheet. Remove the short ribs from the pot and put them on the rack. Cover with aluminum foil and set in a warm spot.


Ladle off any fat that has risen to the top of the braising liquid. Strain into a large saucepan and bring to a simmer. Cook for 45 minutes to an hour, to reduce the sauce to about 2 cups. Whisk in half of the Aged Butter (or unsalted butter).


Rub the remaining Aged Butter (or unsalted butter) over the top of the short ribs and reheat in the oven at 450°F for 25-30 minutes to brown the top of the short ribs. Serve with the sauce. Garnish with fleur de sel and ground cumin.

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