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Shredded Short-Rib Sandwiches

Jason Santos' Short Rib Sandwich + Quahog Chowder, Ben Ford's Mojo Ribs + Meat Chili
Jason Santos' Short Rib Sandwich + Quahog Chowder, Ben Ford's Mojo Ribs + Meat ChiliNathan Congleton / TODAY

Chef notes

I love this recipe because it hits all the textural notes with tender short ribs, creamy pimento cheese and crispy fried onions. You'd be hard pressed to find a more satisfying sandwich!


Pimento cheese
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup jarred pimentos or roasted peppers, drained and diced
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 cup shredded yellow cheddar
  • 1 cup shredded pepper jack cheese
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 tablespoons grated onion
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Short Ribs
  • 2 pounds boneless short-ribs
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, medium diced
  • 2 ribs celery, medium diced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and medium diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • cups tomato paste
  • 2 cups red wine
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
Crispy Onions
  • 2 onions
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Canola oil, for frying
To serve
  • 4 potato rolls, preferably Martin's
  • 1 tablespoon butter


For the short-ribs:


Preheat the oven to 350°F.


Season short-ribs with salt and pepper. Coat a pot large enough to accommodate all the meat and vegetables with olive oil and set over high heat. Add the short ribs to the pan and brown very well, about 2-3 minutes per side.


When the short-ribs are very brown on all sides, remove them from the pan. Add the vegetables. Season with salt and pepper and cook until caramelized, approximately 3-5 minutes. Then add the tomato paste and cook 4-5 minutes. Return the short ribs to the pot and add the wine and chicken stock. Add the thyme and bay leaves, cover the pot and place in the preheated oven for 3 hours. Check periodically during the cooking process and add more stock, if needed.


Pull the short ribs from the oven and allow them to cool in the braising juices. Carefully transfer the meat to a plate and using a dinner fork lightly shred the meat along the natural grains and set aside.

For the pimento cheese:

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and puree until slightly smooth but still textured. Cover and refrigerate for up to a week.

For the crispy onions:


Begin by peeling the onions and slicing very thinly, use a mandoline slicer if you have one.


Separate the onion slices, place them in a shallow baking dish and pour the buttermilk over the top. Submerge as much as possible and let them soak.


In a bowl, combine the flour, salt, granulated garlic, black pepper and cayenne, and set aside.


Pour 1-2 quarts canola oil in a pot or Dutch oven and heat to 350°F.


Drain the buttermilk and coat the onions in the flour mixture, and then tap them on the inside of the bowl to shake off the excess.


Place the onions in the hot oil. When they're golden brown (1-2 minutes), remove them from the oil and place on a paper towel-lined plate. Repeat with the remaining onion slices and serve immediately.

To serve:

Split and butter the potato rolls. Place a pan over medium-high heat and place the rolls buttered side down in the pan to toast. Smear bottom of the bun with pimento cheese and top with warm shredded short rib. Top with fried onions and top bun and serve.