Root BEER Braised Beef Shanks
So . . . did you hear about this Root BEER yet? A friend, who is lucky enough to have a husband who works for the company, recently shared a six pack with me. The first one I drank right from the bottle and I wasn't convinced it was actually alcoholic. It was sweet and spicy like a good root beer. I'm in love with the vintage label too.
But I couldn't resist trying it in a recipe. Remember I mentioned making pulled pork for Labor Day weekend? . . . yup, it was slow cooked in this root beer!
This weekend, I used it to braise beef shanks. This was an absolute winner. I will make this again and again, it was seriously THAT good. Oh, I wish I could share the smells from my kitchen with you!
I started with 1.5 pounds of beef shank. Seasoned it on both sides with rosemary, thyme, garlic salt and pepper. Seared them in a hot pan coated with olive oil.
And then the goodness was added . . . a bottle of the root beer, diced up tomatoes, onion, and beef broth.
Now cook it low and slow for a couple hours until the meat becomes oh so soft, and the liquid reduces, darkens and becomes rich.
Knowing this dish would create a hearty sauce, I decided to pair it with polenta.
I know that I've touted the quick, weeknight pre-made polenta (see the Shrimp and Polenta), but on the weekend I'll take the time to make it from scratch. It's really easy. The bright yellow color pairs beautifully with the dark, rich braised shanks.
Simply boil water with salt, add the corn grits and simmer and stir, then stir and simmer . . . for about 20-30 minutes.
Now you'll have your own pre-made refrigerated polenta for later in the week!
To serve, I add a serving of the polenta to a plate and top with the beef shank, then load it up with the decadent sauce! This is just heavenly!