Black pepper hides in the background. We add it “to taste” so regularly that most of us have forgotten what it tastes like. These short ribs are destined to change all that. They are purposefully black peppered and glazed with a reduction of aged balsamic vinegar that makes the perfume of the pepper bloom across your palate.
BBQ TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT
– Long-handled tongs.
Short ribs are the last 3 inches of bone and meat on a primal beef rib that gets trimmed away when the primal cut is butchered down to a rib roast. They sell for a fraction of the cost of their high-priced brethren, even though they are essentially the same cut. Most people think short ribs need to be stewed or braised, but now that you know they are almost rib roast, you also know they are an excellent candidate for grilling. They don’t need to be brined, marinated, pounded, or pulled. Like a standing rib roast, short ribs are ready to cook just the way they are.
Indirect heat, medium (325° to 350°F)
3- or 4-burner grill – middle burner(s) off
2-burner grill – 1 side off
Clean, oiled grate
Indirect heat, medium ash
Split charcoal bed (about 2 dozen coals per side)
20 replacement coals
Heavy-duty drip pan set between banks of charcoal
Clean, oiled grate on medium setting.
INGREDIENTS (MAKES 4 TO 6 SERVINGS)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
12 pieces beef short ribs (about 3 pounds)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper, or more to taste
Oil for coating grill grate
½ cup balsamic vinegar.
1. Heat the grill as directed.
2. Heat the olive oil and garlic in a small skillet over medium heat until the garlic starts to sizzle; do not let it brown. Transfer to a bowl; reserve the skillet. Rub half of the flavored oil over the meaty parts of the short ribs. Reserve the remaining garlic oil for the balsamic glaze. Season the ribs with the salt and pepper.
3. Brush the grill grate and coat it with oil. Put the short ribs on the grill away from the heat, cover the grill, and cook until an instantread thermometer inserted into the thickest section of the meat registers about 145°F, about 30 minutes, turning once halfway through. If your grill has a temperature gauge, it should stay at around 350°F.
4. While the short ribs are cooking, boil the balsamic vinegar in the same skillet you used to heat the olive oil, until the vinegar is reduced to about ¼ cup. Stir in the reserved garlic oil.
5. Remove the ribs to a serving platter; drizzle the balsamic glaze over the top and serve.