BEEF ROAST Challenge
It’s the Roast Wonderful Time of the Year
Many folks love to cook up a prime rib dinner for the holidays. It’s one of those cuts of meat you bring out for truly special occasions with family and friends. But prime rib is also a cut of meat that deserves a little finessing to get just right before serving for Christmas dinner. Whenever I’m preparing to have prime rib, I love to mix together a special blend of fresh herbs. I especially enjoy what earthy-flavored herbs, like sage and rosemary, bring to the table. You can read more about my fresh-herb mix on Page 3. It’s one step that can add a lot to your prime rib. I will note that adding salt in the rub before cooking is optional. Some people like their roast to stand alone, so to speak. Others prefer adding salt after the cook. Either way, it’s always good to be a bit stingy with salt when you’re cooking. When preparing my prime rib, I may trim a little of the fat, but I leave most of it. Heat from the grill will render down much of that fat. I also keep the meat on the bone. It is easier, saves time, and doesn’t make the finished product any less enjoyable. When you’re cooking a prime rib roast, you have to watch your heat closely. I always advise cooking the meat over indirect heat when on the grill. Getting your rib roast to the internal temperature of 125 F means it’s rare. If you want it more done — around medium rare — heat the meat to about 125–140 F. If you take the internal temperature of rib roast much higher than that, you’re going to be left with a leathery flavor and texture. When you spend a good chunk of change on prime rib, the last thing you want is for it to end up tasting like an old shoe. Another thing I like to do with my prime rib is give it a reverse sear. Of course, this step is completely optional, but I like a little crisp around the edges. There’s just something about beef fat crisping up that really elevates the flavor of a roast. Bring that sear together with the herb rub, and you’re left with a winning combination.
After you hit your desired internal temperature, you can move the meat over to direct heat. All it takes is about two minutes per side, and you’re done. I scoop the meat away from the heat and wrap it in foil for a 30-minute rest. Because I like my roast served hot, I also wrap the foil in a towel and let it rest in a warm spot. Switching gears, I also want to discuss chuck roast — a great low-cost
alternative to prime rib. While prime rib is cut from the top of the ribs, chuck roast is cut from the shoulder. Much like prime rib, a good rub will take this cut of meat a long way. You can find my chuck roast rub recipe on Page 2. Cooking a chuck roast is a different story than the prime rib, as you’d expect. Heat control is everything, and you’re going to want to watch it like a hawk. For instance, there’s a good chance you’re not going to like the result if you cook the chuck to any internal temperature less than 160 F or higher than 200 F. You have to find your sweet spot of doneness.
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