Birch & Barley – Hand Cut Ricotta Cavatelli with Braised Beef Shortrib
Where can you get it? Birch & Barley
1337 14th Street NW Washington DC, 20005
$13 for small portion, $19 for dinner portion (menu changes almost daily so check if it’s available first).
Ingredients: Home-made Cavatelli with Ricotta. Braised short rib. Salsify. Brunois Mirepoix. Parmesan Cheese. (I’ve provided links to each ingredient I wasn’t totally familiar with when I ordered it).Why it’s so Good: I was very curious about this dish when I was at Birch & Barley for a friend’s birthday about a month ago. It just sounded like tasty ingredients, even though I didn’t know what half of them were. Plus I’d been back from Italy for about 2 weeks and was craving homemade pasta. Boy was I satisfied. I would have never thought to mix the Gnocchi like pasta with beef shortrib, but they paired so well. The Cavatelli were like little bits of heaven. Chewy, cheesy and delicious. The short rib was perfectly cooked and full of flavor. There was also a bit of crunch from the mirepoix and when the whole dish came together with the parmesan and salsify, it made for an extremely satisfying meal, but wasn’t too filling. Plus it paired amazingly well with a nice dark beer. I highly recommend a porter, brown ale, or stout.
Bottom Line: This dish is perfect for a cold night, if it’s on Birch & Barley’s menu when you go. But even if it isn’t, try one of their other pasta dishes. They tend to use similar base ingredients and just mix up the rest. For instance they might do the Cavatelli with Roasted Pork and Broccoli Rabe or Sausage and Spinach. Plus they have roughly 500 bottled beers and 40 on draft. So stop delaying and go tomorrow, this weekend, or next month — you won’t be disappointed!