Swedish Egg

Swedish Egg

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Tomato-Marsala Short Ribs w/ Spinach & Carrots - a Delicious Slow Cooker Recipe

A couple posts back, the picture at left appeared with the caption "Food is Love, Exhibit B." (Exhibit A was a potato chip that came out of the bag in a perfect heart shape.)

Potato chips may offer dreamy, drug-like comfort in the moment (confessions of a chip-a-holic), but they in no way offer love to your body in the way that real food delivers.

The dish, of course, is Tomato-Marsala Short Ribs, and I made it in my slow cooker. YUM.

As someone who works 40 hours a week and is committed to eating a Paleo-style/whole food/SIBO-safe diet, I consider the slow cooker to be a godsend. There's nothing like coming home at dinner time and having a wholesome, digestible and delicious dinner ready to enjoy!

Many people only think of using their slow cooker during the winter months, but I love it for summer use, too, since slow cooking doesn't heat up your kitchen like stove top or oven cooking will. Such a great invention!

So far, I've made this recipe twice, once with short ribs, and again with a 2 pound boneless pot roast. Both dishes came out great, with Marsala wine being the distinguishing ingredient. I've not cooked with Marsala before, but I will again! Adds a little something special for sure.

Tomato-Marsala Short Ribs with Spinach & Carrots

Makes 4 servings

4 good sized, grass fed beef short ribs (1+ pounds total)
1 Tbs coconut oil or ghee
Himalayan pink salt & fresh ground black pepper
6-8 organic carrots, peeled
2-4 Roma tomatoes
1/2 cup Marsala wine
1/4 cup tomato paste mixed with 1/2 cup water, or 3/4 cup sugar-free organic tomato sauce
1 teaspoon each oregano and thyme
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper or 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 handful chopped chives or green onions
1 bay leaf
1-2 handfuls baby spinach per serving
additional salt, Nama Shoyu (naturally fermented tamari) or coconut aminos to taste

Sprinkle short ribs on all sides with salt and pepper. Heat coconut oil or ghee in a skillet over medium-high heat, and brown short ribs on all sides. While ribs are browning, chop carrots and tomatoes into 1-inch chunks and add to bottom of crock pot. When ribs are browned, place them on top of the veggies in the crock pot and sprinkle with chives. It will look like this:

Go back to your skillet and turn heat off if you didn't already. Allow skillet to cool for a minute and then pour in Marsala wine to deglaze the pan.

Add tomato paste-water mixture (or tomato sauce) and seasonings (oregano, thyme, cayenne/red pepper) and stir to combine. Pour this Marsala-tomato sauce over the short ribs and veggies in the crock pot, stir gently, and tuck in a bay leaf for good measure. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours.

Before serving, stir in 1-2 handfuls of baby spinach per person and allow to wilt. This takes about 2 minutes with the cover on. Please note that depending on how many people are eating this dish, you may have leftovers. You want to add fresh spinach every time so it always will be fresh and green. Swiss chard can stand in for spinach any day.

Add extra salt, Nama Shoyu or coconut aminos to taste. Serve in shallow bowls, as there will be lots of yummy sauce!

Note: When ribs are done cooking, the meat will just fall off the bone. It's up to you if you want to remove all the bones and break up the meat before serving, like a stew as pictured up top, or put a whole short rib in each dish and ladle sauce on top. Take your pick. ;-)