This Tampa Bib Gourmand is known for their innovative plating and pairings. However, for the colder months, we wanted to focus in on something soothing. Enter chef-owner Ferrell Alvarez of Rooster and the Till Parisian-style gnocchi with braised short ribs, ricotta and pickled peperonata. The ricotta recipe is below, but those wanting to save time can easily buy fresh ricotta. It's a hearty and rich dish—butter plays a starring role here—but view this plate as a filling, comforting cooking project for a winter afternoon. Chef Alvarez says, "This is the only dish that has been on the menu at Rooster since day one."
- 1.5 cups water
- 16oz butter
- 2.25 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp chopped parsley
- 4 eggs
- 1 tbsp salt
- Bring the water and butter to a simmer in a sauce pot. Once simmering, add the all purpose flour and stir on low heat for 5 minutes.
- Add flour-butter mixture, parsley, and Dijon to a KitchenAid bowl. With the paddle attachment, mix on low speed, adding one egg at a time; don’t add the next one until fully incorporated.
- Place gnocchi dough into a piping bag and pipe into just simmering water.
- Once the gnocchis float, remove from water and cool in fridge.
- 10 lb. boneless short ribs
- 2 large yellow onions, diced
- 2 large carrots, diced
- 2 celery stalks, large diced
- 10 whole garlic cloves
- 1 qt. San Marzano tomato juice
- Beef stock
- Season the short ribs with salt and pepper, then sear on both sides.
- Place the seared short ribs in a deep baking pan.
- Add the onions, carrots, celery, garlic, and tomato juice to the short ribs. Submerge in beef stock, cover in foil, and cook for 4 hrs at 300°F until tender and falling apart.
- 1/2 gallon whole milk
- Juice of 2 lemons
- 1/2 tablespoon salt
- Add milk and salt to a sauce pot and slowly bring to a boil.
- Once boiling, add the lemon juice and let simmer for one minute.
- Remove from heat and place into the refrigerator.
- Spoon ricotta into a fine strainer and reserve.
- 1 lb sweet peppers
- 16 oz apple cider vinegar
- 8 oz water
- 4 oz sugar
- 2 tablespoons salt
- Add everything except peppers to a pot and bring to a boil.
- Once liquid is cooled, add thinly sliced peppers.
- Chef’s note: this is best when pickled for a minimum of 3 days.
- Short rib drippings
- Strain the cooked ribs and reserve all the liquid (braising liquid).
- Melt 1/4 lb butter in a small saucepan. Once the butter is melted, add 1/4 lb flour and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon to make a roux.
- In a separate saucepan, bring the braising liquid to a soft boil and then add the roux.
- Simmer roux for 7-10 minutes at a low heat while stirring frequently.
- The drippings should be thick and rich.
- Season to taste with salt then strain one last time.
Composing the dish
- 1 cup short rib drippings
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 1/3 cup chopped San Marzano canned tomatoes
- 1 cup vegetable stock
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 tbsp chopped parsley
- 12 gnocchi
- Heat a large sauté pan over medium high heat with 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
- Once the oil is warm, add the minced garlic and sauté for 10-15 seconds.
- Add the chopped San Marzano tomatoes and combine.
- Add the short rib drippings, vegetable broth, and gnocchi; reduce the heat to medium and simmer, stirring frequently.
- Continue cooking until sauce is thick and rich and gnocchi are heated all the way through. Taste one to be sure.
- Remove pan from heat and add butter and chopped parsley.
- Season to taste with salt and serve in a bowl. Finish with as much homemade ricotta and pickled peperonata as you like.
Rooster and the Till chef-owner Ferrell Alvarez
All photos © Skyler June/Rooster and the Till