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Comments by YACCS
Friday, October 27, 2006

This the king of all the meats

cooking for engineers
Prime Rib

There's a Quiznos commercial pushing their prime rib sandwich. Here's the real thing.

Recipe File: Prime Rib or Standing Rib Roast

Prime rib used to refer to a prime grade standing rib roast, but these days all rib roasts (and some rib steaks) are called prime rib regardless of the USDA grade it recieved. The rib roast cut is usually so good that it doesn't need much seasoning. The ingredients I use are simple: a standing rib roast, salt, and pepper.

Preparation is also quite simplistic for an entree with such a grand reputation. In fact, with a couple tools, this dish is easier to prepare than any other special event food (roast duck, turkey). The items you'll need are a roasting pan (usually comes with your oven or you can get a large baking pan and a wire rack to place in it), a probe thermometer (like the Polder model that I use), some kitchen twine, and a pair of tongs.

Hmmm, now you need a standing rib roast (also known as prime rib even if the beef isn't prime quality). The term "standing" means that because the bones are included in the roast, the roast can stand by itself. A rib roast with the bones removed is commonly referred to as a rolled rib roast. My preference is for the standing variety because the bones provide additional flavoring to the roast. A rib roast comprises of seven ribs starting from the shoulder (chuck) down the back to the loin. Each rib feeds about two people, so if you have a party of eight, buy and cook a four rib roast. The rib roast closest to the loin is more tender than the rib roast nearest the chuck. This end is referred to as the small end rib roast or loin rib roast or sirloin tip roast. The chuck end of the rib roast is bigger and tougher and is sometimes referred to as a half standing rib roast or large end rib roast.

Depending on preference, you can dry age the roast for a few days to bring out additional flavor and produce a more buttery texture in the muscle (aging allows the natural enzymes to break down some of protein in the meat). Age the beef up to a week in the refrigerator by leaving it uncovered on a wire rack over a large pan to catch any drippings for at least a day and no more than seven days. When you are ready to cook the beef, trim off any dried pieces after the aging. It is common for a roast to lose about 10% to 15% of its weight during a week of aging.

Take the rib roast out of the refrigerator and let it sit on the counter for a couple hours to raise the roast temperature to near room temperature. To help cook the roast evenly, we'll need to tie the roast. Using kitchen twine, tie the roast parallel to the rib bones at least at each end. I usually tie between each pair of ribs. Heat the roasting pan or a separate pan on the stove until hot with a little oil. Place the roast on the pan and sear for three minutes on each side. Remove from heat and season heavily with salt and pepper. Place on the grill of your roasting pan or on a wire rack. Now stick the probe of your thermometer into the roast so that the probe is approximately in the middle of the roast (and not touching a bone). Position the pan on an oven rack in the lowest position of your preheated 200°F oven. Yes, 200°F. The low heat will evenly cook the roast so that most of the roast will be at the desired temperature. Cooking at a higher temperature will finish the roast faster, but you will probably result in well-done on the outside of the roast that gradually results in a medium-rare interior (if you are trying to cook a medium-rare roast). Roasting at 200°F will result in almost all the meat ending at medium-rare.

Set your thermometer for 130°F for a medium-rare roast (125°F for rare; 145°F for medium; any higher and it's overdone - you might as well be serving a cheaper piece of beef). When the roast is done (about 45 minutes per pound), remove from the oven, set the roast aside, and let it sit to redistribute juices for at least twenty minutes. This is a good time to make a jus from the drippings of the roast.

Pour off any extra grease that's collected in the pan. You can save this to make Yorkshire pudding if you wish. Now deglaze the pan by pouring in 1/2 cup beef broth and bring to a boil. After you've scraped off the bottom of your pan and mixed it into the jus, season with salt and pepper. Simple.

When slicing the roast, first cut the rib bones out and then lie the roast on the cut side to carve large slices off the roast

posted by Steve @ 1:54:00 AM

1:54:00 AM

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