4 pounds/1.8 kg grass-fed beef short ribs, trimmed
1 tablespoon Chinese five-spice blend
Fine sea salt to taste
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 medium-size red onion, cut into 1/4-inch/0.65 cm dice
6 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups/710 mL organic reduced-sodium beef stock
1 pound/455 g tomatoes, peeled (optional), seeded, and cut into 1/4-inch/0.65 cm dice
1/2 cup/120 mL balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup/60 mL raw cider vinegar
1/4 cup/60 mL pure maple syrup
1/2 medium-size red cabbage, cored and cut into 1/4-inch/0.65 cm shreds
1 teaspoon arrowroot powder dissolved in 1 tablespoon cold water
Preheat oven to 300°F/150°C.
In a very large, ovenproof skillet or braising pan over medium-high heat, heat the oil. Sprinkle the ribs with five-spice blend, salt, and pepper. Working in batches, add the ribs to the skillet and brown all the meaty sides, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer the browned ribs to a large bowl or platter.
Add the onion to the skillet and cook until lightly browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, 30 to 60 seconds. Stir in the stock, scraping up any browned bits in the skillet. Add the tomatoes, vinegars, and maple syrup. Add the ribs, nestling them into the liquid, increase the heat to high, and bring to a boil. Cover and transfer the pan to the oven. Bake for 1 ½ hours.
Remove the skillet from the oven and add the cabbage, nestling it into the liquid. Cover, return to the oven, and bake until the meat and cabbage are tender, about 30 minutes more.
Use a slotted spoon to transfer the ribs and cabbage to plates or a platter and cover loosely to keep warm. Skim any fat off the surface of the liquid, then return the skillet to the stovetop. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook until the liquid is reduced to 1 ½ cups/355 mL, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the arrowroot mixture, stirring until the sauce thickens, about 30 seconds. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Arrange the cabbage on plates. Top with the ribs and drizzle with sauce. Serve hot, passing any remaining sauce at the table.
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