Christmas Roast

A Christmas Roast, Dec. 2016


After the huge cooking spree for Thanksgiving I’m happy to create a simple elegant meal for Christmas and I always turn to a rib roast. Most people refer to them as a ‘prime rib’ yet that really refers to the grade of meat. While USDA Prime Grade is the best, it can also be on the expensive side, while a good ‘Choice’ grade is nearly as good as the prime, it can be purchased for much less. Both roasts are considered ‘standing rib roast’ and you treat them equally in cooking.

Costco has the absolute best deal on both Choice and Prime Grade roasts, choose bone in for the best flavor and juiciness. Either roast will need to cook a little longer with the bone in but the flavor is superior. A trick you can do is cut the bones off the roast and tie them back onto the roast, you’ll still get juicy flavor but won’t need to roast quite as long.

The roast will take some time to come to room temperature so remove from the refrigerator 3 house before roasting. Pre heat your oven for 30 minutes and roast for approximately 15 – 20 minutes per pound, start with a high heat, 450°, for 15 minutes, then turn the oven down to 325° and continue cooking. Use a digital probe thermometer for best results, it’s worth spending $15 or $20 on a digital thermometer for a $75.00 roast.

For rare roast remove from the oven when the thermometer reaches 120°, for medium rare, 125° or 130° for medium, the meat will continue to cook (called carry over cooking time) while it rests. I like to serve the roast with a Red Wine Sauce or Bordelaise Sauce but remember that your sauce will only be as good as the beef stock you use so use the best. Homemade is tops but if you must purchase a stock try More Than Gourmet Glace de Veau (veal stock). Standing rib roasts are great on the grill also but that’s another story.


Photo: Josh, The Meatwave

Prime Rib or Standing Rib Roast

Serves 8
Total preparation time: 1 hr. 30 min. – 2 hr.

  • 1 (7 lb.) Rib Roast, Bone-In or Boned & Tied
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 clove garlic, minced – optional use 1 teaspoon ground garlic (NOT garlic salt)
  • Sea Salt and ground pepper

Place roast in a shallow baking pan bone down, melt butter in small saucepan and add garlic and salt and pepper. Mix well, brush over roast, and let stand at room temperature for 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 450°F. Use a probe meat thermometer*, placed into the center of the roast but not touching bone. Roast for 10 minutes in uncovered pan, then reduce heat to 350°F and continue for 1 hour and 20 minutes for rare. Baste with pan drippings from time to time. Thermometer should read 120° - 125° for rare, 130° - 135° for medium rare. Do not cook beyond 140°, medium. Let the roast stand for 15 minutes, with the probe in the meat, before slicing. Slice either between the bones or cut off all the bones at once and the slice the meat into serving pieces.

Roast 15 minutes more if you want a medium roast, another 15 minutes for well done.

Remove from oven when done, and allow the meat to rest for a few minutes before carving. Transfer to a warmed serving platter.

• A digital probe meat thermometer – the probe remains in the meat while in the oven and the control sits outside on the stove or counter. See link below

Bordelaise Sauce

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, sliced in rounds
  • 2 cloves garlic, cut in half
  • 4 peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 11/4 cups beef broth*
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • Sea Salt
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine
  • 1 tablespoon Italian flat leaf parsley, chopped

Melt the butter in a heavy skillet and sauté the onion until transparent. Add the carrots and cook until soft.

Place garlic, peppercorns, and bay leaf in cheesecloth bag. Add to pan along with 1 cup of beef broth. Boil until broth has been slightly reduced, about 10 minutes, then season with thyme and salt.

Remove cheesecloth bag and put mixture through a coarse strainer. Return to pan.

Meanwhile, dissolve flour in the other 1/4 cup of broth and add gradually to sauce. Stir constantly until sauce thickens, then add the wine. Reduce heat and allow to simmer until ready to serve, and then sprinkle chopped parsley on top.

Use a quality beef broth if not making your own such as More Than Gourmet Glace de Veau (veal stock).

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