Recipe: Star anise braised short ribs

Star-Anise Braised Short Ribs with Roasted Parsnips, Fennel and Carrots
Serves 4


  • 4 four boned beef short ribs
  • 1 bottle of cheap port wine
  • 2 8 ounce jars of hoisin
  • 1 gallon of chicken stock
  • 4 each parsnips, cleaned, peeled and quartered length wise
  • 2 large bulbs of fennel, stalk removed and sliced in half
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1/4 thick coins
  • 1 12 ounce can of organic peeled, whole tomatoes
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 375. Place the chicken stock, port, both jars of hoisin and tomatoes into a large oven proof braising container and bring to a rolling boil. This is your braising liquid. Make sure you stir occasionally. Your best bet for your braising container is one that is not flimsy, but sturdy. Le Creuset is an excellent brand.

  2. Season the short ribs extra generously with Kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper and freshly ground star~anise (pre-ground is fine). 1 1/2 tablespoons of each spice is plenty. In a large skillet add 3 tablespoons of olive oil and bring to wisps of light smoke. This should be on medium to high heat and it should take about 2 mintues. Add the short ribs and brown all sides. The browning times will vary from which type of pan you are using. The goal here is to get a deep golden brown on all sides.

  3. Once the braising liquid is to temperature add the short ribs and cover. Place into oven and cook for 3 hours. If the meat is not easily pulled off, return to oven for another 30 minutes. Once cooked remove the short ribs and reduce the braising liquid by half. You shouldn't have to stir this mixture, just make sure it doesn't boil over the top. It should be a little thinner than gravy.

  4. Take the parsnips, fennel and carrots and toss in olive oil, Kosher salt and freshly ground white pepper. 1/2 teaspoon of each spice is ample. Place on a half sheet pan and bake for 25 minutes. Remove and let cool.
Arrange the vegetable around the plate and place the short ribs in the middle of the plate. Generously sauce the plate and be sure to coat the short rib.

Restaurant Information:

500 Florida Street
San Francisco, CA 94110

About Garret Martindale, Executive Chef, Circolo
Chef Garret Martindale brings more than ten years of experience in the restaurant industry to his role as Circolo's Executive Chef. Martindale now both oversees the day-to-day operations in the Circolo kitchen and showcases his cutting-edge culinary talents in executing Circolo's outstanding menu.

Building on Circolo's award-winning cuisine, Chef Martindale has brought his own signature style and creativity to re-design and simplify the Circolo menu while continuing to feature such famous dishes as adobe-crusted rack of lamb and pickled ginger whole steamed fish which San Francisco Northside Magazine called "One of the best steamed fish in all of San Francisco."

Prior to assuming his role at Circolo, Chef Martindale was Executive Chef at San Francisco's Rotunda Restaurant where he supervised a staff of 33 line cooks and pastry personnel. Before that, he served as Executive Chef at both Taste Restaurant and Le Bistro Elephant where he designed the overall concept and menu structure for these now successful start-up venues. During his tenure there, Taste received the coveted three star rating from the San Francisco Chronicle. Throughout his professional career, he has consistently demonstrated dynamic leadership in the kitchen and his intimate knowledge of various different styles of cuisine as the Executive Chef of such well-known San Francisco restaurants as The Carnelian Room (also received three stars from the Chronicle), Two-B Restaurant, Charlie's Restaurant, the Pacific Restaurant in the Pan Pacific Hotel and the Pacific Union Club.

Chef Martindale graduated at the top of his class from the California Culinary Academy and has served on the teaching faculty of the American Culinary Institute.

One of the Bay Area's most successful eating establishments, Circolo has been singled out by the Zagat Guide as "Arguably the most ambitious dining and nightlife venue since the beginning of the era." It was awarded the Gayot SF "New and Notable" award shortly after it first opened and was recently included in its "10 Best SF Restaurant/Lounge Awards." And just as importantly, the San Francisco Examiner praised Circolo's ambience writing, "Circolo is warm, inviting and comfortable that people don't ever want to leave."

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