Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Recipe: Roast Prime Rib of Beef

Today's world food that you can prepare at home is kind of ubiquitous. It really has no one place of origin. It is also quite possible the first cooked food: Roast Meat. Specifically: Roast Prime Rib of Beef.

Homemade prime rib is one of the special treats in my home. For one it's not the most economical cuts of beef you'll come across. Secondly, it's not one of the healthiest. It sure is good though! So this dish is reserved for birthdays, anniversaries, holidays and the most important of all: days when it is on SALE!

It's preparation is not difficult, but the details vary and can be a little critical. Each cut of meat is different and each home oven is varies. Each precaution you execute in cooking your roast increases the quality of the final dish. For instance:

When purchasing your meat, talk to your butcher! Let them know your plans and the number of people you'll be serving. They're going to be a great help. Also, buy your meat several days in advance and let it sit in the bottom of your fridge (in its store packaging or a similar alternative). I believe this makes a difference in the flavor and tenderness. Some people are probably going to disagree, but I find it works for me. You'll want a good idea of how your oven performs as well. Does it hold an accurate temperature? Are there hotspots that will necessitate turning the roasting pan while cooking? Most people who cook a lot know their ovens well. If you don't, all this can be sorted out with an oven thermometer.

Finally, and most importantly, I highly recommend using a good remote electronic meat thermometer. NOTHING takes the work out of roasting beef, pork, turkey, venison, etc. than a remote electronic meat thermometer. It also cuts down on opening the oven and losing valuable heat and potentially burning yourself (yes, I've done this too many times).

What I write three times is my best cooking advice:

Get yourself a remote electronic meat thermometer.
Get yourself a remote electronic meat thermometer.
Get yourself a remote electronic meat thermometer.

Now, let's get to roasting some prime rib!

Roast Prime Rib of Beef

Prime Rib Roast (you choose the size, but at least a two rib roast)
1-4 cups kosher, rock or coarse sea salt (dependent upon the size of the roast)
1 cup white wine
1 can beef broth

Remove the roast from the fridge an hour or two before cooking.

Preheat your oven to 450°F

Mist down the roast with balsamic vinegar or water.

Pack the exposed meat areas (not the bone or fat areas) of the roast with the salt. You want it to stick to the roast as well as possible so apply some light pressure. Some will fall off. That's okay. It is better if it falls off while packing it rather than while roasting it.

Gently place the roast bone side down in an appropriately deep sided roasting pan (1"-2").

Place the roast in the oven and roast for 15 minutes at 450°F, after that,lower the oven temperature to 350°F until the meats cook to your desired doneness. Use a meat thermometer to judge doneness:

105°F For an ultra-rare piece of meat.
110°F For a red and rare piece of meat.
115°F For a medium-rare piece of meat.
120°F For a piece of meat that is "done".

This is prime rib and anything above 120°F at this point is going to end up tough and dry.

When the roast reaches your desired doneness temperature remove it from the oven.

Carefully, lift the roast from the pan trying not to dislodge any of the salt. Place the meat on a tray or plate and using a pastry brush remove and discard all the salt from the roast.

Move the roast onto a sheet of aluminum foil and cover with another piece of aluminum foil. Seal the entire roast in the aluminum foil and allow it to rest for 15 minutes. Keep the thermometer in it as the temperature will continue to increase. I find 10 degrees to be ideal. If it climbs faster or too high, unwrap it from the foil.

While the roast is resting:

Remove and discard any visible salt from the drippings in the roasting pan.

Place the roasting pan over a burner set on high. When pan and juices are hot, add the white wine to the pan and deglaze. Be sure to scrape up any bits of meat or crust stuck to the bottom of the pan.

When the wine evaporates, add the beef broth bring to a boil then lower the heat to a simmer and continue simmering until the mixture is reduced by half. Remove the pan from heat. Reserve the juice in a bowl or gravy boat.

After the roast has rested 15 minutes, unwrap from the foil. Add any juices in the foil to the beef broth mixture.

Remove the chine bones in one slice by cutting just behind them. (These are the small, diagonally positioned bones on the wide end of the roast. Save these for picking at later as the meat surrounding them is tender and delicious!)

Slice the roast into desired serving sizes, plate and drizzle with juices.

Recipe: Roast Prime Rib of Beef from Chop Onions, Boil Water by Henry Krauzyk


  1. That looks perfectly cooked! I still haven't put away my roasting pan from Thanksgiving, maybe I should use it again for this while it's still out.

  2. You have just posted a beautiful photo of my very favorite dish. And prepared to perfection, as well.

    Thank you for a great post and that super photo.

    DocChuck and wife, Dr. E.

  3. Thank you for your kind comments. Prime rib is certainly one of my favorite dishes. I promise you it is easy to prepare to perfection at home!

  4. You've touched my carnivorous soul with this dish, Henry. Perfectly done.

  5. I want steak so badly now, looks amazing!

  6. I'm finding that other people are as passionate about prime rib as I am. I look at this and want it again and again!

  7. Nice photo. I don't know why I do not eat prime rib more often.