Christmas Prime Rib Roast

Entertaining for a large dinner party will have lots of work and plenty of details to attend-to, so putting a big roast in the oven for “long and slow” cooking is ideal. It gives you plenty of time to fix other side dishes, set the table, and prepare for your guests.

Today, I purchased a HUGE (almost 20 pounds) boneless Prime cut of ribeye roast, and cut just a small roast off the end to freeze for another meal. This left a big 15-pound roast that would fit into my largest roasting pan (with rack).

I chose the PRIME meat today, because it is a special occasion and this is the best cut of meat available in my wholesale club. The next-best cut of meat is “choice” and then “select.” If your budget allows for it, choose prime cuts of meat for the best quality.

Begin by patting the meat dry with paper towels and then liberally coating with olive oil so your seasonings will better adhere to the meat. I like to use a combination of Morton’s Seasoned Salt (blue top) which has great taste with Montreal Steak Seasoning. The Montreal Steak Seasoning also has a really great taste, but different from the Morton’s and it has a much more coarse texture.

Be sure to season the meat very liberally — more than you think you should put on it — because it is a large roast and only the outside is getting seasoned. Insert a meat thermometer into the center of the largest part of the roast, and put in the oven at no more than 300 degrees about 6 hours ahead of your intended serving time.

Roast at 275 to 300 degrees until the meat reaches 130 degrees for medium rare. This will take about 4 to 5 hours, depending on your oven and the size of the roast. NOTE: when slow-roasting, you will not have as much carry-over cooking after removing from the oven, because the meat is cooking more slowly, and the temperature will only continue to rise a few degrees. On the other hand, if you are roasting at 350 or more, then the meat will be hotter and have more carry-over cooking (the thermometer could continue to rise up to 10 degrees after removing from the oven).

After removing from the oven, tent the roast loosely with foil and allow it to rest for at least 30 minutes. Within 30 to 45 minutes, the meat will still be plenty hot for serving, and if you carve into it any sooner then the juices will run out and leave you with grey looking slices.

Carve into fairly thick slices (1/2 inch — up to 1 inch). Move slices to a platter and serve immediately with horseradish sauce.

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