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Ancho Chile & Cilantro Short Rib with Sweet Corn Purée

I’ve been writing for Dean & DeLuca’sGourmet Blog‘ for a few months now and just love playing around in their market. The myriad of fine ingredients, luscious products and utensils are any chef’s, home cook’s or true gourmands haven. It’s a place to learn new things.

My most recent experience with an exclusive brand of unadultered beef (which I’ve bragged about it here) made it’s way to hundreds of thousands readers’ inbox’s through the Manhattan-based market’s e-mail blast. Exciting stuff, but it was a luck of the draw situation. I didn’t have a lot of time to be super creative, but still had to produce something amazing.

They want nothing less.

And neither do I.

I received my goodies and went to my cocina and began a lovely labor of love.

The first time I had Brandt Beef reminded me of the first time I had organically and fresh chicken, raised by my grandfather in Miami.

I was a mere 7 at the time, but distinctly remember how tender, moist and juicy that pollo tasted. I even helped my grandfather pluck the feathers. That was the last time I enjoyed chicken so much.

My experience with beef has pretty much been the same case. Seldom have I thoroughly enjoyed a well-made piece of steak that was cooked to perfection. Perfection may be relative, but in my case it requires all those attributes that young bird had many years ago. I specifically look for tenderness in the toughest cuts (flank steak is a great example), juiciness and not too overcooked, though I prefer not to see any pink or too much red.

My mother has single handedly been the one to always please and never disappoint. After all, she is responsible for exposing my taste buds to beef tongue, oxtail, tripe and other fantastic cuts.

But that’s just me. We all know and have those friends that have to have their steaks rare. However, not all steaks are meant to eat in such form. After making the Bavette steaks from Brandt Beef, I was hooked and wanted to work some of other prime cuts. It wasn’t too long before I came up with a spicy seasonings and herb combination for their short ribs.

I’ve not been adventurous enough in making shore ribs  other than the commonly braising them nor had I ventured into making a super spicy version. I have an uncanny and most times annoying low tolerance to heat. For my steaks, I usually opt for anything tomato and wine based.  But, something about making these with a bit of ancho chile in a spicy red wine and cilantro glaze sounded too good not to try.

I found myself in a quandary while  making this succulent piece of beef. Did I want to wait over night to enjoy it the following day, requiring me to refrigerate it, or did I want to wait a few hours while it cooked the night of? It was a mean waiting game, no doubt. Needless to say, I kept my taste buds satisfied as I continued dipping my tasting spoon in the sauce.

And later nibbling on the corn purée I made to accompany my short ribs.

I initially thought I wanted to render the fat off  the short ribs, but after seasoning them with my goodies, I determined it didn’t have enough fat to justify that process. Stat. This also meant I wasn’t going to let them refrigerate overnight. As long as I kept them covered up in the oven, for a reasonable amount of time, I’d yield  that perfect costilla.

Lo and behold, after 3 hours of grilling, rubbing, blending, glazing and pureeing, I’d come up with a great juxtaposition of spicy and a dash of sweetness. The short ribs were juicy and tender, with a robust flavor I really wasn’t sure was going to work. The cilantro and jalapeño played extremely well with the ancho and wine reduction. The corn purée also had a role in ensuring a smooth bite with my beef. The asparagus spears topped it all off with its slight crunch, though I almost would have been completely better off with either more corn purée or another rib.

But, that would make me greedy since I had invited a local journalist to have lunch with me.

She left just like I wanted her to: tweeting a picture of my new favorite summer dinner!

Eat well, love unapologetically, pray with true intention, and take care of yourself.

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Ancho Chile & Cilantro Short Rib with Sweet Corn Purée by Bren

For Short Ribs:


  • 3 short ribs
  • 3 tsp. ancho chile powder, parted
  • 1 tsp. cumin, parted
  • 1 tsp. sea salt, parted
  • 2 tbsp. basil garlic olive oil
  • 1/2 cup cilantro
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1/2 med. jalapeño, minced
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1.5 cups red wine (Chilean)
  • 1 tbsp. four pepper corn (crushed)
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar


Rinse and pat dry short ribs. Place in large plate. Rub 1.5 tsp. of ancho chile on both sides of ribs. Do the same with cumin

and sea salt. Cover and let marinade for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat Basil Garlic Olive in grill.  Cook short ribs for 6-7 minutes on each side until entire rib is brown. Remove from heat, place on baking sheet and place on middle rack of oven. Cook ribs for 30 minutes, uncovered.  While ribs are cooking in oven, make sauce. Using blender or processor, add garlic, cilantro, jalapeño, water and 4 peppercorn. Blend for 1 minute or until cilantro has liquified. In large skillet, add wine and stir until it almost begins to boil. Lower heat, add brown sugar and sauce from blender. Stir in remainder salt, cumin and ancho powder. On low heat, stir sauce continuously until it has reduced or thickened up, about 10-15 minutes. Remove ribs from oven and place in deep casserole dish or deep pan. Pour sauce over ribs, covering them completely. Cover with aluminum foil and place back in oven. Lower heat to 250 and cook for additional 30-45 minutes, until ribs are tender and juicy. Remove from heat and cut rib into 3 parts, where bones are.

For Sweet Corn Purée:


  • 2 cups fresh corn, parted
  • 3/4 cup whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 heaping tsp. butter
  • 1 heaping tsp. sugar
  • salt to taste
  • 3 pinches ancho chile powder


Add 1 cup of corn kernels, whipping cream, water and sugar to blender or food processor. Pulse until  most of the corn has broken down and is smooth. In separate non-stick skillet, turn heat to medium and melt butter.  Stir in corn puree, remaining corn kernels, ancho powder and salt to taste. Whisk until all ingredients are well blended. Maintain heat on medium and cook for 10-15 minutes.

To plate:

Scoop 1/2 – 1 cup corn purée onto oval or curved plate. Place one one short rib on top of corn, rubbing some of the sauce on top. Lay 3-4 baby spears of grilled or roasted asparagus on top of short rib, in diagonal shape.

Serves 3.

55 thoughts on “Ancho Chile & Cilantro Short Rib with Sweet Corn Purée

  1. Yumsss – looks great and am sure tasted even juicier. Bren will you be my chef (as soon as the lotto money finds me….lol)?

  2. Damn girl, you rocked it out with this. Too bad I didn’t get any when you were in DC. I’ll have to come to Atlanta to have some. Your dad told me the corn puree was off the rockers. And you know I’m a steak man, so the flavors are right up my alley… muah!

  3. Rosa: Girl, it’s as good as it looks and probably a lot better!! I almost licked my plate!

    JoanNova: thanks, chica! Good to see you stop by!

    Emma: Thanks! Brandt Beef is just too good and I’ll eat it any day of the week!

    Farah: Yumminess is exactly right! Juicy, tender and flavorful!

    Dave: Yup! You should have come by the night I made it for besos y camarones… 😉 next time! All yours!

  4. Wow….you get the German Chocolate when I get some of this! Oooh – I could tear into these ribs. Let’s get it done! 🙂

  5. Bren,

    Awesome. The short rib looks cooked to perfection. I am a big fan of a good corn puree. My kind of flavor profile.


  6. Yummy!!! I need to try the corn puree for sure. I can just imagine the taste of the spicy steak since I love spicy!!! Great stuff but than again I don’t expect anything less from the Superstar Bren!!!

  7. Having a glorious FLASHBACK! I can’t thank you enough for that delicious culinary experience. Pictures look as AWESOME as it tasted too. GREAT JOB!!

  8. Chris: Deal!

    Jenn: thanks girlie. good to see you here. we need to visit each other more often! Short ribs were amazing! Love the idea of polenta.

    Lazaro: They were honey. Corn purée is just so divine.

    Simone: I need to make this for you and Reggie. Skip out on eating out one night and let me cook for you all!

    Wise Diva: Yes, yes, yes! Wasn’t it fun that afternoon? You know you’re welcome anytime!

  9. Me encanto la mezcla de texturas y sabores. El Chile ancho es uno de mis favoritos porque no es tan picante, pero anhade dimension a cualquier platillo.

    Love the sweet corn puree, I think it will also pair very well with plantain tostones 😉

    (uy, ya me dio hambre Bren!)

  10. That dish looks amazing! I rarely eat beef these days but I have a craving for some now, especially that dish, after looking at that picture and reading the ingredients. Makes me want to head to the local market and get some short ribs so I can try it out myself.

    By the way, I can totally relate to that story about your grandfather in Miami. I had the same experience with my grandmother in Jamaica on many occasions.

  11. Heidi: Si mi’ja la mezcla fue superior. Los sabores estaban espectaculares. Ay si, que rico con platanitos fritos.

    Rivas: Yes, indeed. Please do try!

    Val: yes indeed! was sooo good!

    Rohan: The short ribs will make any non-meat lover re-consider. They were so juicy and tender with the right about of bite. Aren’t grandfather’s the best.

    Nick: THanks, love. I think so, too!

    5 Star Foodie: Thanks, love! Sauce was a hit and can be used with other meats.

  12. Mmmmm…. looks so good! I must try this receipe. I love cooking and finding new receipes. Not just your ordinary corn!

  13. This is that awesome sweet and savory combination that always does the trick. Always. We whipped up a corn puree last year for a summer dinner, and it was so good. Love the smokey spice in it.

  14. Bridget: Well you live around the corner so I’m glad to make this for you anytime. And, I think you like corn, right?!

    DuoDishes: Yes indeed. You get it gurl!

    Carol: Thanks woman. It was truly divine. I love it and will add it to my menu for my client! 🙂

  15. bren estas pasada eso se ve esquisito .como me gustaria que estuvieras cerca para que me cocinaras .por que se ve muy rico gracias por compartir con todos esas cosas tan ricas

  16. Oh my. You saved me a lot of work. I am getting the ingredients this weekend and this will be Sunday’s Dinner. I cant wait. I will let you know how it turns out. My mouth is watering already. Thanks!

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