Eat Like a Princess - Belle - Beef Ragout

"Beef ragout, cheese souffle, pie and pudding 'en flambe!" Lumiere has officially made me hangry... A parade of elegant dishes showing off as they pass Belle at the dining table in a cold and mysterious French village was Belle's fate. It is a miracle she maintained her waistline! Speaking of waistlines, quarantine, and the need to bake five different carbo loaded foods over two days I needed a change in my diet. I started keto this week (high fat, moderate protein, and low carb) and have been feeling much better. However, Belle is all about carbs this month. I didn't want to keep cooking and baking without being able to eat any of it! So I've decided to make a keto version of recipes where I can and note the swaps to help you adapt the recipes to you and your family!

The major swap for beef ragout was easy. Instead of serving over egg noodles for myself I used spiralized zucchini sauteed in butter, garlic, and parmesan cheese. The awesome thing for me is I don't feel like I'm loosing out on anything with this switch and I still get to enjoy the slow cooked flavor of beef short ribs!

I used boneless beef short ribs and simmered them for 2 hours in onion, garlic, bacon and tomatoes then pulled apart the meat with two forks. At the two hour mark the beef is not quite finished and the bacon has not rendered down. Throwing the shredded beef back into the pot to continue to cook in the sauce created by the simmering juices produces to super tender meat. I topped the dish with a dollop of whole milk ricotta cheese. Riccotta is not French at all but it was a pleasant juxtaposition to have a creamy, sweet flavor against the acidic, fatty beef. A touch of parsley on top would have brightened up this dish but Mini Mouse was extra cuddly before dinner. Alas the parsley stayed in the pantry.

There isn't too much liquid sauce left at the end of the cooking process. If you wanted more sauce you can add a can of crushed tomatoes and adjust the level of seasoning. Also, watch the liquid level in the pot during cooking - keep the heat low during the simmering process to prevent too much fluid loss. No one likes a dry ragout. If you are running low, you can add more stock. I didn't use wine at all in this dish since we didn't have any. If you like to cook with wine use red wine which pairs with beef stock. Otherwise use white wine or chicken stock. Let me know what toppings you would use - parmesan cheese, parsley, other veggies or olives?

Beef Ragout

Serves 6-8


  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup onion
  • 4 oz bacon, chopped
  • 1 1/2 lbs of boneless beef short ribs (3 lbs bone-in)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 tbs parsley, dried
  • 1, 28 oz can of whole peeled tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup of wine or stock


  1. In a heavy bottomed pot, heat oil over medium heat and cook onion, garlic, and bacon for 2 minutes.
  2. Add short ribs to pot, season with salt, pepper, and parsley then brown for 2-3 min per side turning as needed.
  3. Lower heat and add wine or stock plus tomatoes to pot, gently breaking apart with a wooden spoon. Stir to combine and simmer for 2 hours on very low heat stirring occasionally to monitor liquid level and consistent cooking.
  4. Remove beef from pot. Shred with two forks. Return to pot and continue to simmer for 30-60 minutes adding stock if needed to adjust fluid level. Adjust seasonings as needed. 
  5. Serve over zucchini noodles, pasta, polenta, mashed cauliflower, potatoes, or vegetables. Top with extra cheese or parsley. Enjoy


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