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Perfect Prime Rib

Perfect Prime RibThis is it, the recipe for the perfect prime rib.

Recipe Ingredients:

1 (3-rib, about 7 pounds) standing rib roast, preferably first cut
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Cooking Directions:

  1. Set roast on rack above pan lined with paper towels. Refrigerate for 3 to 7 days. Shave off dehydrated exterior layer of roast with sharp knife. Let roast rest at room temperature for 3 hours; tie roast.
  2. Adjust oven rack to low position and heat oven to 200°F (95°C). Heat large heavy-duty roasting pan over two burners set at medium heat. Place roast in hot pan and cook on all sides until nicely browned and at least 1/4 cup fat has rendered, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove roast from pan. Drain off fat. (Reserve fat in measuring cup if making Yorkshire pudding.) Set wide rack in pan, then set roast on rack. Generously season with salt and pepper.
  3. Place roast in oven and roast until meat registers 130°F - 55°C (for medium-rare), about 3 1/2 hours (or about 30 minutes per pound). Transfer prime rib to cutting board. Let roast stand stand 20 minutes (a bit longer is fine) before serving.
  4. Remove twine and position roast so that rib bones are perpendicular to cutting board. Using carving fork to hold roast in place, cut along rib bones to sever meat from bones. Set roast cut side down on board and carve meat across grain into thick slices.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Note: If you don't purchase the roast several days ahead of time as the instructions suggest, a day or two of aging in the refrigerator will help. The roast is first browned on top of the stove and then placed in the oven. You can accomplish both steps in a heavy-duty roasting pan. Otherwise, brown the roast in a cast-iron skillet and then transfer it to a regular roasting pan. It is essential that the temperature inside your oven is actually 200°F (95°C). Some ovens can run a bit cool at such low settings. Use an oven thermometer and, if necessary, boost the thermostat as needed to maintain a constant temperature of 200°F (95°C) inside the oven.

Recipe Source: Adapted from How to Cook Holiday Roasts and Birds, An illustrated step-by-step guide to roast turkey, goose, Cornish hens, ham, prime rib, and leg of lamb, by The Cook's Illustrated Library.

Photograph provided courtesy of The Beef Checkoff.