On February 19, my boyfriend and I went out to dinner at Manna Restaurant in Water Mill. My colleague, Alexandra Talty, had written about it — the East End’s newest restaurant — earlier that week, and we were eager to check it out.
Here is what we found: a beautiful, intimate space with dim lighting and a menu full of modern Italian food that rivals everything else around.
My boyfriend ordered Chef Marco Barrila’s short rib pappardelle — and proposed to me fewer than three weeks later. So, move over Engagement Chicken, we’ve got a new heaven-sent recipe in town.
Chef Marco Barrila’s Short Rib Pappardelle
- 2 TB Vegetable Oil
- 3.5 -4 lbs Short Ribs (each 2 inches)
- Salt, Pepper, freshly ground
- Black Peppercorn
- 1 Dry Bay Leaf
- 5 Cloves Garlic
- 2 Sprigs Rosemary
- 2 Sprigs Thyme
- 4 Small Carrots, diced
- 2 Stalks Celery, diced
- 1 Med Onion, diced
- 2 Med Shallots, diced
- 1 TB All-purpose flour
- 6 oz Tomato Paste
- 3 32 oz Cans Italian Plum Tomatoes (San Marzano)
- 2 Cups Red Wine, Borolo or Chianti
- ½ Head Garlic Cloves, separated and peeled
- 3.5 Cups Homemade Beef Stock
- 1 Lb Pappardelle (or other long flat pasta)
- Chopped Parsley
- Grated Parmesan for garnish
- Heat oven to 325 degrees.
- Heat skillet on medium, add oil until it is almost smoking.
- Season short ribs generously with salt and pepper. Working in batches if necessary.
- Add short ribs to the hot oil. Cook ribs until browned on both sides. Remove ribs the sauce pan and transfer to large bowl. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, prepare bouquet garni. Place bay leaf, black peppercorn, garlic, rosemary, thyme in the center of a square of cheesecloth. Bring edges together and tie with kitchen string. Set bouquet garni aside.
- Add carrots, celery, onion and shallots to oil in the sauce pan and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally until sauce pan and stir to combine. Add red wine, let it reduce by half, add all tomatoes and the reserved bouquet garni. Return browned ribs to the sauce pan. Bring the liquid to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cover the sauce pan and place it in the oven.
- Cook until ribs are very tender about 3 hours. Remove the cooked ribs from the casserole. Set the sauce pan on the stove top over medium heat and simmer to thicken sauce just slightly. As soon as the short ribs are cool enough to handle remove the meat from the bones and shred into small pieces. Degrease the sauce and discard the bouquet garni. Return shredded meat to the casserole and simmer to reduce by half.
- Fill a large pot with water and set over high heat and bring to a boil. Add salt and stir in pasta. Cook until pasta is al dente.
- Drain pasta and serve with short rib ragu, sprinkle with the parsley. Serve with the freshly grated parmesan cheese.
Manna Restaurant — owned and operated by Chef Marco Barrila and his wife Sheila Minkel Barrila (the same duo behind Insatiable EATS) — is at 670 Montauk Highway in Water Mill. They are open seven days a week.
Editors Note: Congrats to our Meghan!