Thursday, December 13, 2007

Dry-Aged Standing Rib Roast Recipe (and a word about turducken, chidurkey, or a gobble-quack-cluck)

A co-worker of mine (a fellow foodie) asked me if I had a recipe for a beef tenderloin. I didn't but talked her into a standing rib roast instead. Her family loves prime rib so this was an easy sell. She said she needed a foolproof recipe. I have found mine to be pretty foolproof for a rare to medium rare rib roast that is juicy and tender on the inside and with a delectable crust on the outside. I often have cravings for this roast and really should try to make it more often than just around the holidays. I have tweaked this recipe over the past few years and the current one produces the perfect standing rib roast for me. The family loves it.

My recipe is actually a combination of Paula Deen and Alton Brown's standing rib roast recipes. Alton's recipe required a terra cotta planter and I really didn't want to deal with it. I've done Paula's recipe exactly and it turned out pretty good, but I prefer to cook the rib roast based on the internal meat temperature. I think that's a much better gauge as to the "doneness" of the meat. We like our meat to be medium rare, closer to rare than medium. If you prefer medium, the internal meat temperature should be about 130 degrees before you pull it out of the oven. I've noted this in the recipe below.

I have found Alton's method for dry-aging the rib roast to produce the most juiciest and tender roast. I like this method better than searing the rib roast.

  • 1 standing rib roast (3-4 bone-in) (3-bone should be able to feed 6 people)
  • Canola oil, to coat roast (I use Olive Oil sometimes)
  • Kosher salt, to cover entire roast
  • Freshly ground pepper, to cover entire roast (I like coarsely ground pepper on mine)
  • Garlic powder, to cover roast (optional)

Dry-aging Instructions:
Take the rib roast out of the package. Place the standing rib roast upright onto a pan fitted with a rack. If you don’t have a rack, place several layers of paper towels on the bottom. It’s for drainage. (I've used a very large plate before but just make sure you monitor the drainage.) Place paper towels loosely on top of the roast. I use a couple of layers of paper towels. This will help to draw moisture away from the meat. Place into a refrigerator and change the towels daily for 3 days.

Remove the roast from the refrigerator. Let the roast stand at room temperature for about 2 hours. This step is very important. Make sure you do this or the rib roast will not cook properly.

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Rub with canola or olive oil, including the bones.

  2. Cover the roast with kosher salt, about half a teaspoon per bone.

  3. Rub with freshly ground pepper to coat the surface.

  4. Sprinkle garlic powder over the roast and rub in. (You can combine the 3 ingredients and rub into the roast all at once.)

  5. Place the roast in a pan large enough to hold it comfortably, bone-side down. Place a probe thermometer into the center of the roast and set for 118 degrees. (Be sure the thermometer is exactly in the center of the roast.) Turn the oven down to 300 degrees F and roast until it reaches an internal temperature of 118 degrees. Turn off the oven.

    If you like it rare, take the roast out of the oven at this point and cover with foil. The internal temperature will continue to rise a bit (~5-8 degrees). Skip Step 6. DO NOT remove the thermometer probe. Keeping it in will prevent all the internal juices from running out.

  6. Set the thermometer to 125 degrees F and let it stand in the oven until the internal temperature reaches 125 degrees. DO NOT remove the roast or open the oven door before it reaches 125 degrees. If you like it a little towards the rare than the medium side, you can take it out at 120 degrees. Take the rib roast out and cover with foil. DO NOT remove the thermometer probe to keep internal juices from running out. You can disconnect the probe from the reader. The temperature will continue to rise a bit after you’ve taken it out (~5-8 degrees).

  7. Preheat oven 500 degrees. Place the roast uncovered into the oven for about 10 minutes to create a nice crust, or until you achieve your desired crust. Remove and transfer roast to a cutting board. Keep covered with foil until ready to serve.

Some chefs like to let the roast sit for about 15 minutes before carving. This is so that the juice will settle within the roast. I like to cut the roast away from the bones and then slice the roast about 1” thick. Use an electric carving knife if you have one, makes removing the the bones very easy. If you don't have an electric carving knife, make sure you use a long, very sharp knife to cut the roast to your desired thickness. Serve with horseradish sauce or au jus.

We like to eat the meat on the bones. Okay, 'gnaw" on the bones. No stickin' knives for this part. Just grab an end with each hand and start gnawing. I usually like to save these for left overs because the meat around the bones heat up nicely, even though not rare, and stays very tender. BTW, DO NOT feed the bones to your dogs. Cooked bones splinter easily and cause all sorts of issues for you dog. That is, unless you enjoy spending your Christmas in the animal ER and $3000 of your money treating a torn GI tract. Or worst yet, losing your best friend. JUST DON'T DO IT!

Just a personal word about the "doneness" of standing rib roast. I personally think it's a waste to cook a standing rib roast anything more than medium rare. The method above will actually produce medium done meat at the end of the roast for those who like their meat with little to no pink. But anything more than medium tends to dry out the meat and it becomes tough. Now why would you want to do that with such an expensive and beautiful piece of meat? Isn't it much better when the meat almost melts in your mouth?

For reference, here is a general cooking temperature gauge for beef roast. I didn't include temps past medium because, well, if you read the previous paragraph, you know why.

  • Rare - 120° to 125°F - center is bright red, pinkish toward the exterior portion
  • Medium Rare - 130° to 135°F - center is very pink, slightly brown toward the exterior portion
  • Medium - 140° to 145°F - center is light pink, outer portion is brown

On a side note but still in spirit of food, during lunch today, the Mister told me that he wants to try a chidurkey. A chiwa-what?? He said, "A chi-dur-key." I gave him my famous (and often annoying) wtf look. He went on to explain that it is a chicken stuffed in a duck stuffed in a turkey. Did you follow that? I'm thinking to myself, I must give up my foodie membership card because that sounds insanely like food porn and just...well, insane. He said it's all the craze and Bischer's sells them. Huh. (Wow, the Mister is really starting to talk like a mister of a foodie. I'm such a proud Missus.)

So of course, I had to look this up. I'm not one to back down on a food challenge. What the Mister wants, the Mister gets. Apparently, a chidurkey is also known as a turducken. Now, a turduken sounds vaguely familiar. I found a wonderful and entertaining 2-part article that told me everything I wanted to know about turducken. It even has a reference to Sonya Thomas. Don't know who she is? Haha, try to catch one of those food eating competitions on Food Network some time. I guarantee you Sonya will be on there. And if she isn't, she's either suffering from a severe stomach virus or gave up gluttony for Lent.

Back to turducken. Apparently the true Cajun version also includes 3 types of stuffing: 1 within the chicken, 1 between the chicken and the duck, and 1 between the duck and the turkey. Gracious! As if I'm not already in a food coma right now from lunch. Well, that's about as much as I can write about this right now. Read the article, if not only for the humor. Hmm, I do have 2 weeks off coming up. Maybe a turducken is in my near future...

So be off with you. Eat well. And good luck, K, on your first attempt at a standing rib roast.


Anonymous said...

OMG, I tried your recipe and it came out perfect! I never had so many complinemts on a meal before. If anyone doubts it, I can tell you this is foolproof. I always end up over cooking my meat but not my prime ribs anymore!--Chuck

Barefoot Plumies said...

Hi Chuck. Thanks for stopping by and posting a feedback. I'm glad the recipe worked out for you. One friend said it was so easy she felt guilty having her family think she slaved for hours. :)

Keep on roasting!

Anonymous said...

My mom asked for a standing rib roast for Christmas again this year since she loved this so much when I made it last year. Are you going to make it again?


Barefoot Plumies said...

Hey Sherry! I'm not sure yet if I'm making a standing rib roast or a turducken for Christmas. I'm leaving that up to the Mister to decide. But if it was my choice, I would make a standing rib roast!