Sunday, January 1, 2012

Dry Aged Prime Rib

When you're cooking for a good amount of people this is a good standby recipe. Most people like it, it is fairly simple to make and extremely hard to screw up.The holidays are an especially iconic time to make one of these roasts, and this year it is no different.

As far as size goes, expect two to three people per rib. Don't be afraid to overbuy either, prime rib makes great leftovers. With that said, I shoot for two people per rib. If you know you have some light eaters at the table though, three per rib is fine as well.

Once you buy your rib roast you have two preparations to choose from. Normally, people will make it the day after they buy the roast, and that is certainly fine. With a little forethought though, you can dry age your roast for 7 to 10 days and have something really special to serve your guests. Dry aging is a simple process where we promote the growth of good bacteria in the meat to improve the overall quality of the product.

The most important part of this recipe whether you dry age it or not, is the resting. Please, please, please let it rest for thirty to forty minutes before you cut into this sucker. Inside the meat there are all sorts of liquids being pushed from the inside of the roast to the outside of the roast due to pressure from the heat. When you cut it right away the juices are not evenly distributed; you end up with a river of flavor running out of your meat and onto your cutting board. Let it rest and you will minimize this truly horrific sight.

Note: If you don't age your prime rib, just follow the directions from step three on. Also, you will notice in the picture above that I tied my roast before cooking it. I've been informed that this is not necessary for roasts of this size, but if you want to tie it up it won't hurt it either.

Dry Aged Prime Rib:
Prime rib roast (3 to 4 ribs)
Extra virgin olive oil
Coarse kosher salt
Coarse ground pepper

1. Rise the roast under cold water and then pat dry with paper towels. Let the roast air dry for 30 minutes. Evenly wrap the roast in three layers of cheesecloth. Place the roast on a large plate and refrigerate for 24 hours.
2. After 24 hours, remove the old cheesecloth and wrap the roast in three layers of new cheesecloth. Dry age in the refrigerator for 7 to 10 days.
3. Temper the roast for two hours before cooking. Right before you cook the roast, preheat an oven to 275F.
4. Lightly coat the roast in olive oil with a basting brush and then liberally season with salt and pepper. Put the roast in a roasting pan and place this in the oven with the meaty part facing the back of the oven. Try and make sure the roast is in the center of the oven as well.
5. Cook for 1 1/2 hours and then take the temperature of the roast. Remove the roast when it reaches 124F or 125F. To get a medium rare roast do not cover the roast in foil as it rests. For a medium roast, cover in foil as it rests.
6. Whether or not you covered it in foil, let the roast rest for 30 to 40 minutes.
7. Carve your rib roast and serve with your desired sides such as gravy or horseradish cream.
The big blue plate

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