Chile and Orange Braised Flanken Style Beef Short Ribs

Chile-Braised Flanken Style Beef Short Ribs at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.comThe folks at Finish asked me to take the Finish Rise and Shine Challenge and create a difficult-to-clean meal to put Finish® Quantum® with New Power Gel to the test. I thought this was a great excuse to make a braised short rib recipe that I saw in Bon Appétit magazine to use up the flanken style beef short ribs I had in the freezer.

This recipe was a good choice for the Finish Rise and Shine Challenge, because braising makes a lot of mess. Plus, the flanken style ribs were so greasy I had to put the cooked meat and vegetables in a colander to drain them onto a cookie sheet – lots of grease for Finish to clean up!

More on the Finish Rise and Shine Challenge tomorrow. First the recipe!

flanken style beef short ribs

Changes to Bon Appétit’s Chile-Braised Short Ribs recipe

This was the first and last time I’ll use flanken style short ribs. Besides being too greasy, they cooked too quickly, which turned the short rib recipe into a stew recipe. (I’ve adjusted the times accordingly below so you don’t end up with stew like me.) I also didn’t like all the little pieces of bone I had to pick out of the meat.

Here are the other changes I made to Bon Appétit’s recipe to create my Chile and Orange Braised Flanken Style Beef Short Ribs :

  • Chiles: The original recipe uses dried New Mexico chiles. Even though we have a large Hispanic population here in Athens, GA, I couldn’t find any chiles labeled “New Mexican” so I used the dried ancho chiles I found at Kroger.
  • Marinade: I found that the marinade was very thick and was worried that the meat wouldn’t be evenly exposed to it. So I added a cup of soaking liquid to make the marinade less paste like.
  • Cuties to the rescue: Dummy me forgot to buy lemons, so I used Cutie Clementine oranges instead, which sweetened up the braised ribs a little.
  • Cauliflower: Since I have a food sensitivity to potatoes, I used cauliflower instead.
  • Olives: I didn’t read the label on the Mezzetta Castelvetrano Olives I bought on sale at CostPlus World Market, and accidentally bought olives with the pits still in them. Oops! I ended up using a paring knife to cut off the meat, thus the olives were chopped not whole.
  • Carrots: To save time, I used baby carrots instead of cutting up large carrots.
  • Parsley: Instead of fresh parsley, I used Gourmet Garden’s parsley for taste rather than garnish.
  • Less clean up: Finally, I tried to have you use less cookware than the Bon Appétit recipe called for by soaking the chiles in the blender, marinating the meat in the pot, and so on.

All in all a heavy, but delicious dish. I really liked how the tangy sourness of the olives contrasted with the sweetness of the meat, orange juice and carrots. However, my daughter, Lucie, didn’t care for the olives at all, so you may want to serve your kids the ribs without the sauce.

Chile-Braised Flanken Style Beef Short Ribs at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet -

Chile and Orange Braised Flanken Style Beef Short Ribs

Based on Bon Appétit’s Chile-Braised Short Ribs from the March 2013 issue


  • 8 dried ancho chiles
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 4 Cuties Clementine oranges, zested and juiced
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 5 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 5 pounds flanken style beef short ribs
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 large cauliflower, but into bite size pieces
  • 3/4 pound baby carrots
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 cup pitted Castelvetrano green olives, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup Gourmet Garden parsley


  1. In a large skillet using NO oil, roast chiles over medium heat until slightly puffed and slightly darkened, about 1 minute on each side. (The chiles I used were large enough that only 4 fit in my skillet, so you may have to do this twice.)
  2. Remove the chiles from skillet and let cool.
  3. Pull stem off chiles and halve lengthwise. Scrape out and discard seeds.
  4. If you’re comfortable pouring boiling water into your blender or food processor, then place cleaned chiles into it. (You can use a bowl instead if you're not.) Add boiling water to cover and let stand for 20 minutes. Drain water, reserving one cup of liquid, and leave chiles in blender or food processor. (Or place them into your blender/food processor if your soaking them in a bowl.)
  5. Combine chiles, garlic, Clementine orange zest and juice, oil, salt, coriander, cumin and 1 cup soaking water in a blender or food processor. Purée until marinade is smooth.
  6. Place flanken style beef short ribs, onion and marinade in a large oven safe heavy pot, like the 7 1/4 quart Le Creuset French oven I used. Cover with lid and chill ribs in the refrigerator overnight.
  7. Preheat oven to 350°.
  8. Add broth to the heavy pot, then bring everything to a boil on your stove top. Cover pot and transfer to oven. Braise ribs for 1 1/2 hour.
  9. Add cauliflower, baby carrots, and tomato paste to the post. Make sure to keep meat and vegetables covered in the liquid.
  10. Cover with lid and return to oven. Continue braising until meat is fork-tender and separates easily from the bone and vegetables are soft, 1 to 1/2 hours longer.
  11. Turn oven off or keep it at the “warm” setting.
  12. Place colander on a cookie sheet. Using a slotted spoon, transfer short ribs and vegetables to the colander to drain excess grease.
  13. When meat is cool enough to the touch, remove any small pieces of bone that have come loose from the flanken style ribs.
  14. Place meat and vegetables into an oven safe casserole dish, cover with foil, and return to oven to keep warm.
  15. Place your large cooking pot on the stove over high heat. Bring liquid to a boil then reduce heat and simmer. Use a spoon to skim fat from surface.
  16. Simmer for about 10 minutes until sauce starts to thickened like gravy. Stir olives and parsley into sauce and keep warm over low heat.
  17. To serve, place short ribs and vegetables on plate and and spoon sauce over. Enjoy!
Prep Time: 12 Hours
Cook Time: 3 Hours
Total Time: 15 Hours
Servings: Makes 8 servings
  • Serving size: 1/8 of recipe

Read Part Two of the Finish Rise and Shine Challenge tomorrow!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating: 5 4 3 2 1