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Prime Rib with Horseradish Cream Sauce

Juicy, tender prime rib perfect for celebrations of good tidings.

Juicy, tender prime rib perfect for celebrations of good tidings.

When you want to save up a few dollars from eating out, and cook something absolutely indulgent, reach for a prime rib. It can be cooked with very little fuss, and make your dinner party feel like a royal occasion.

The holidays are always a time for over the top meals. We eat things we probably shouldn’t be eating, but then again it’s the magical time when we get to revel in special moment. Why not celebrate with an absolutely divine meal and many delicious things to come in the new year?

Prime rib, aka a standing rib roast, is associated with a high end cut of beef. Typically this larger cut will be broken down into rib eyes. Because the muscles are a greater distance from the hoof and horns, it essentially does less work and is a more tender cut of meat. Normally the cut has a thick layer of fat on the outside top portion and thick ribbons throughout. It’s not really all that healthy, but it sure tastes good and keeps moisture and flavor in the meat as you cook it.

A butcher is the best place to get your cut. They can trim the outer layer of fat (if desired), trim the bones for a pretty presentation, or even cut the bones out and give them back to you for roasting purposes only. I like supporting small businesses and knowing where my beef comes from, so it’s a great place to shop if you can’t raise or buy your own animals which would be preferred.

An aged cut of prime rib, beautiful in color and ready for prepping.

An aged cut of prime rib, beautiful in color and ready for prepping.

 In my recipe I start with my own home aging process. Aging is a way of drying out the beef which helps concentrate the flavor. This also promotes the natural enzymes in the muscle which break down connective tissue and make your end result even more tender. There are ways to promote the best results with this process which require gadgets and excessive monitoring, but for the home cook I found some pretty straightforward directions that still warrant good results.  Butcher paper keeps everything locked up tight, including the excess fluids which contain bacteria. Left to it’s own devices for long periods of time, bacteria growth starts to happen and spoilage of meat will occur shortly thereafter. Instead of leaving the meat in it’s paper, remove your butcher paper upon arriving home and pat dry your meat. On a platter or small roasting pan, you place a cooling rack (which you’d normally use for cookies) inside or on top of it. From there you’ll set your roast on top, and cover it loosely with a paper towel. Every day for three days you turn the roast and change out the paper towel. The cooling rack allows airflow on all sides of the meat, while the platter catches any drippings, and the paper towels keep the roast in a happy little bubble not allowing cross contamination within your refrigerator.

After this drying process, it’s important to let your roast come to room temperature. This ensures you meat cooks to your desired doneness, otherwise chances are you’ll end up with an overcooked outside and undercooked inside. Usually this process takes about an hour and gives you time to prep your meat.

Personally I love adding garlic cloves to my meat. If you’re a garlic lover then I suggest you try this!  I’ve found that adding raw garlic cloves inside the meat usually don’t cook all the way through, although they do flavor the meat. Instead what I do which is a time saver anyways, is that I throw my garlic cloves (with husks on) into the microwave for 20-30 seconds. The steam generated by heating the garlic releases the husks for super easy peeling, but also semi cooks the cloves so they end up done at the same time as the roast. It’s important though that you let them cool down completely after the microwave before inserting them into the meat. Once cooled and husks removed, I insert a paring knife into the meat about 1 1/2-2 inches. I then insert my peeled and cooled garlic clove into the meat. By pressing the surface seam of the meat together, the clove should disappear completely. I then proceed to use up my remaining head of garlic in this fashion.

Slits created with a paring knife allow for garlic to be embedded in the meat creating lots of flavor.

Slits created with a paring knife allow for garlic to be embedded in the meat creating lots of flavor.

Once my garlic is inserted, I’ll truss up my meat. This is especially important if your rib bones have been removed, but you want the extra flavor they provide. Or in the case of a boneless roast and you have loose ends of meat. Because I don’t want anything overcook, I’ll make the decision to cut off the excess pieces (but why waste it?), or just truss it up. Trussing is a process to hold meat together so it cooks evenly. I’m not very good at the more complicated vertical and horizontal methods, but this video helps to educate and get you one step closer to perfection with an easy surgical knot.

The next step is rubbing the meat with spices. In my technique I use on my Juicy Roast Chicken, it’s a combination of oil to help coat and crust the meat, but also to moisturize as it roasts.

My truss on the roast helping to bring the stray pieces of meat together.

My truss on the roast helping to bring the stray pieces of meat together.

Spice mixture for coating of prime rib.

Spice mixture for coating of prime rib.

Depending on what size roast you get, will depend on your cooking time. Usually I start the oven low and slow, letting the meat come up to an internal temperate of about 115-120 degrees. For a five pound roast, this is about two hours. I remove the roast, and lightly tent foil over top. I then bring the oven to 450 degrees. Once it reaches temperature I remove the foil and place the roast back in the oven. In about fifteen minutes it has the desired crust I like, coming up to about 130 degrees in temperature which will give me a medium doneness by the time the temperature spikes again during it’s rest period. Once removed from the oven, you let the meat rest with the tented foil,  and you’ll be all set and ready to carve in no time!

The cooked roast after it's first initial bake. Internal temperature of 118 degrees Fahrenheit.

The cooked roast after it’s first initial bake. Internal temperature of 118 degrees Fahrenheit.

The finished roast, ready for resting.

The finished roast, ready for resting.

Delicious cloves of garlic tucked away into perfectly cooked prime rib.

Delicious cloves of garlic tucked away into perfectly cooked prime rib.

My favorite sauce is a tangy horseradish and sour cream sauce to serve alongside the roast. It’s compromised of lemon, sour cream, salt and horseradish and makes this roast extra luxurious.

Thick slices of prime rib with horseradish cream sauce and extra horseradish make for the start to a wonderful meal.

Thick slices of prime rib with horseradish cream sauce and extra horseradish make for the start to a wonderful meal.

For all the special meals you hope to create in 2014, I wish you nothing but the best and most delicious food!

To full plates and eating your tarte out,

Prime Rib with Horseradish Cream Sauce
Serves 4
Juicy prime rib, stuffed with garlic and coated with spices is accompanied by a tangy zippy horseradish sauce.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 standing rib roast, 4-5 lbs
  2. 1 head of garlic
  3. 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
  4. 3 tablespoons of Kosher salt
  5. 1 tablespoons of fresh ground pepper
  6. 1 tablespoons of sweet smoked paprika
  7. 1 tablespoon of rosemary
  8. 1 teaspoon of dried mustard
  9. 1/2 cup of sour cream
  10. 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice
  11. 2 tablespoons of fresh horseradish
  12. Salt
Instructions
  1. Find a plate or a platter big enough to to overlap the roast by 1-2 inches. Place a cooling rack over top of the platter to ensure drainage. Remove butcher's paper and/or plastic from the roast. Pat dry with paper towels and place onto the rack. Place clean, dry paper towels loosely on top of the roast. Change the towels daily for three days, flipping roast every day.
  2. On the day you're ready to cook, remove roast from refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature, about one hour. Turn the oven to 250 degrees F.
  3. Place your entire garlic head into the microwave and heat for 20-30 seconds. This easily removes the husks and allows them to cook slightly. Allow to cool completely. Remove husks and set whole cloves aside.
  4. Using a paring knife, make slits in your meat about 1 1/2-2 inches deep, about every three inches. Insert garlic clove into the meat and press the top seams together so your garlic completely disappears. Repeat until garlic is used up.
  5. Truss up your roast with kitchen twine, bringing together any loose ends of meat to make an evenly compact roast. Rub your roast with the vegetable oil, and then coat with your spice mixture. Place onto a roasting pan with raised rack. Place into oven.
  6. Cook roast for two hours or until internal temperature reaches 115-120 degrees. Remove from oven and tent with foil. Set oven to 450 degrees.
  7. Once oven temperature is reached, place roast back into oven without the foil and cook for 10-15 minutes or until desired crust is formed and temperature reaches 130 degrees.
  8. Remove and transfer roast to a cutting board. Keep covered with foil until ready to serve.
  9. In a small bowl combine sour cream, lemon juice, horseradish and salt. Mix together and add more of any ingredient until desired taste is achieved.
  10. Carve up your meat, and serve horseradish cream sauce alongside. Enjoy!
Eat Your Tarte Out | Baking, cooking and general shenanigans. http://www.eatyourtarteout.com/
Written by Tarte Chic

Author Kat Nielsen (formerly Kat Wojtylak) is a creative type with an immense love for food. She maintains a day job handling marketing and brand support to various companies while enjoying her evenings and weekends writing recipes and blogging all about her culinary experiences.

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