Short rib gratin
• Sea salt
• Ground black pepper
• 3 beef short ribs
• 2 tbsp olive oil
• 1 brown onion, finely diced
• 2 carrots, finely diced
• 2 sticks celery
• 3 garlic cloves, crushed
• 600ml red wine
• 500ml rich beef stock
• 2 tbsp tomato puree
• 1 kg Maris Piper potatoes
• 1100ml semi skimmed milk
• 1 tbsp salt
• 50g butter
• 40g plain flour
• 1 tbsp thyme leaves
• 400g gruyere, grated
Preheat the oven to 140°C/280°F.
Liberally season the beef ribs with salt and pepper then brown them in a frying pan with half the oil. Set aside.
• In a casserole big enough to take all the ribs and cooking liquid heat the remaining oil and gently sautee the onion, carrot and celery until soft.
• Add garlic and continue to cook for a further few minutes. Add the beef ribs back into the casserole along with the wine and stock; bring to a simmer, put the lid on and place the whole thing in the oven for around 4 hours, until tender to the fork.
Meanwhile, peel and thinly slice the potatoes. It helps to have a mandolin at this stage.
Add them to a wide saucepan with the milk and bring to a simmer. Cook for roughly 5 mins until soft to the point of a knife. Carefully take them out of the milk and set aside.
In a separate pan heat the butter until foaming then add the flour. Cook for around a minute then gradually pour in the leftover starchy milk from the potato cooking, stirring all the time to make a smooth sauce.
When the short ribs are ready, remove them from the cooking liquid and shred them. Reduce the liquid with the thyme to make a delicious gravy – season to taste then add the beef back in.
Assemble the dauphinois in a baking dish – one layer of beef followed by the bechamel and a sprinkling of gruyere and a layer of potatoes. Repeat, finishing with a layer of potatoes, bechamel and gruyere.
Turn the oven up to 180°C and bake for around 40 minutes, until cooked through and bubbling.