Slow-braised Beef Stew with Mushrooms
Subtle Asian flavors like ginger, Chinese five spice, and soy sauce join short ribs and mushrooms in the slow cooker for an easy, fragrant beef stew. Serve this hearty, comforting beef dish over a bed of jasmine rice or mashed potatoes--you'll definitely want something to soak up the rich sauce. If you do not have port or cream sherry on hand, you can simply increase the amount of red wine by 1/2 cup as a substitute.
Don't confuse beef short ribs with back ribs cut from the beef loin.
If you don't have a slow-cooker, put meat in a 2-inch-deep, 4- to 5-quart baking pan (about 9 by 13 in.); heat liquids and flavorings (step 2), pour over meat, and seal with foil. Bake in a 350° oven until meat is very tender when pierced, 2 1/2 to 3 hours. After 1 hour, check liquid and add water up to original level. Reseal pan with foil and return to oven; after 30 more minutes, check and adjust liquid level again. When meat is tender, continue with step 3; leave meat in pan, draining off liquid, or transfer to a casserole.
You can make this dish up to 2 days ahead; let cool, then cover and chill. Bake, covered, in a 350° oven until meat is hot, 20 to 25 minutes. Serve stew with hot cooked rice or mashed potatoes.