USDA PRIME: These shortribs are graded USDA Prime, the top tier of quality in the US. The Prime grade indicates the highest level of marbling, resulting in increased tenderness and flavor.
HOLSTEIN CATTLE: Our California Reserve Boneless Shortribs are sourced from Holstein Cattle, raised in California predominantly in the SE corner of the state. The size (diameter) of Holstein cuts will be smaller than the Angus.
Flash frozen after being processed, these chuck shortribs will be safe for an additional 6-7months in your freezer, or 4-5 days in your refrigerator once thawed.
UN-AGED: Two reasons why we do not dry age this particular cut – first, because there is very little protective covering that would allow us to dry age these (without enough bone or fat covering the meat, you incur too high of a trim loss when you trim the aged edges off the meat after it has finished dry aging). Secondly, whether thick cut or thin cut, these shortribs are most often paired with sauces or seasonings that are high in flavor, so we would not want to have a scenario where the dry aged flavor is competing with whatever recipe you’re going for!
The short rib is a cut that can get very confusing, very quickly. That’s because the muscle that is universally loved as “shortribs” is called the Serratus Ventralis, and it spans a large section of the carcass. So large that when the animal is broken down at the slaughterhouse, you can find sections of this muscle in 3 separate subprimals: the Chuck Flap, the Chuckroll, and the Navel Shortrib Plate. But then to make things even MORE confusing…. when you pull the Serratus Ventralis out of the Chuckroll primal, it’s now called the “Zabuton” cut. And… wait for it…. if you take that “Zabuton” piece and cut it into individual steaks, those are called “Denver Steaks”. See? No wonder it’s exhausting to keep up with nomenclature!
What we’re dealing with here is the Chuck Flap…. But I think we can all agree that the word “flap” doesn’t exactly get you excited about recipe development, so we’ll just stick with the name “Chuck Shortribs.” The Chuck Flap is the smaller/tapered end, so while you would have the same amazing marbling, you are dealing with a much thinner cut. For that reason, these tend to work best in scenario where you are not looking for a plate presentation of a single piece per serving. Think of ragus, ravioli filling, etc. Alternatively, they are phenomenal when cubed and used for a beef stew. Truly a versatile winter cut!
In terms of cooking, I suggest to either braise or braise, or as an alternative, braise*. That method is what these short ribs are all about. They rank at the top of the Comfort Food list when prepared in this manner. There are a million variations ranging from “Haute Cuisine French” to “Down Home BBQ,” which gives you an idea of the versatility here. The basis of all these recipes is “low and slow.” In any method used, the meat is browned first in a skillet, then moved to a pot containing whatever sauce you have chosen and allowed to simmer slowly for a few hours. Absolute winner hint: This type of entrée (cooked in a sauce) will be better the second or third day after cooking because when left in the sauce, the meat will continue to absorb and be enhanced by the flavor of the sauce. I always make a double batch, freeze half (sauce and all) – then you have a “get out of making dinner free card,” for all you have to do is thaw and heat.
Timing can be variable; in the simplest sense, you just want to cook until the meat is fork tender. You’ll want to make sure that the individual short rib pieces are placed in a single layer in the cooking pot (don’t stack them on top of each other), and whatever sauce you’re using should be almost covering the meat. Figure a good rule of thumb is that if you’re cooking in a 350degree oven, it’ll take about 2 and a half hours.
*Okay, technically you could go a few other directions with these, I’m just biased. These short ribs are of a high enough quality that theoretically you could throw them on a grill, but you would want to go as low of heat as possible, and turn the pieces almost constantly (a quarter turn every 5-6 minutes). In my humble opinion, the amount of effort required to do these on a grill (especially when compared with the simplicity of braising) is simply not worth the end result.
This cut also could work if sliced very thin and cooked very quickly over high heat, in a Korean BBQ style method. You would have to do the slicing on your end (we prep them in larger pieces here), and a good tip for getting as thin of slices as possible is to make your cuts when the meat is halfway frozen.