How do I cook prime rib/roast beef?

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Assistant Cook
Jan 27, 2004
I need some help!! I know this really good chef and he will not tell me how he does anything (very annoying). The other week he cooked roast beef that in the middle had 4 different shades of pink!! It looked amazing and the different textures while eating it were fantastic... My question is - Does anyone else know how to do it? I would mess about but it would cost a fortune as over here in the uk beef is quite expensive..

Thanks in advance everyone

Cooking a Prime Rib Roast

Mmmmm - that's what it sounds like to me too ironchef. And he probably doesn't want to tell you because then you will know how easy it is and you might take him off that very high pedestal!! ;)

Mikeyc - He probably just cooked it so it would come out rare - but when you start cutting at the outside that part will be more done - then the closer you get to the center the more rare it becomes - giving you all those different colors with the pinkest in the center. As you start cutting from the ouside in you will first find medium-well, then medium, then medium-rare, then rare. Here is a guideline you can go by:

12 lb Prime rib roast
Salt to taste
Black pepper to taste

Remove roast from the refrigerator at least two hours before
beginning to cook. Place in a shallow roasting pan and liberally
sprinkle fatty top with salt and pepper. Pat in. To protect the oven
from spattering fat, place a tent of aluminum foil loosely over the
top of the meat.

Preheat the oven to 500°F and when temperature is reached place roast in oven and roast for the times listed below. THE TIMES MUST BE ADHERED TO EXACTLY. Set a timer to remind you as a few minutes of overcooking will ruin the roast. When the cooking time ends, turn off the oven but DO NOT open the door. Allow the roast to remain in the oven for at least 1 hour or until the oven is lukewarm, which occurs in about 2 hours. The roast will be beautifully rare inside and retain a crunchy outside and an internal heat suitable for serving for 2 hours. The roasting time works out to 15 minutes per rib or approximately 5 minutes per pound.

1. For a 2 rib roast weighing 4 1/2 -5 lbs. allow 25 to 30 minutes at 500°F

2. For a 3 rib roast weighing 8-9 lbs. allow 40-45 minutes at
500° F

3. For a 4-5 rib roast weighing 11-12 lbs. allow 55-60 minutes at
500° F

A small end Prime rib is always the best.
The other week he cooked roast beef that in the middle had 4 different shades of pink!! It looked amazing and the different textures while eating it were fantastic.

I guess it was something between medium and medium rare.
However, Ironchef is right, you have to be more specific. :roll:
I know I'm a little late to the discussion but I couldn't help notice something about the recipe:

4 ribs - 11 to 12 lb???
You guys are being just a bit merciless to this poor Brit!

Can't imagine what Prime Rib might cost per pound or kilo in the UK but its probably a Harvard tuition...

Again, a digital temperature probe is a must...for British tastes, you tend to like it well done, as opposed "bleeding" (pulsing?) in North America, so maybe medium to medium rare when you take it out...

Giving an undersized roast (2.5-3.5 lbs/1-1.5 kg) a good rub with a mix of olive oil, minced garlic, your incredible Wooster Sauce, a touch of Soya Sauce, a dash of balsamic vinegar, and a crusting of Kosher Salt...if needs be use some skewers to pin it upright on a broiling pan...

Pre-fire the oven to around 450 degrees, then insert the roast...cook for 20 minutes and reduce heat to 325 and carry on for 27 minutes per pound (and only then start the probing with the digital thermometer!) without ever opening the oven door, as has been stated elsewhere)

Cook to 10 degrees below recommended and let sit for 20 minutes before carving, preserving the drippings for gravy...

I grant the point that for the multi-colour meat texture, you will need to do this with a fairly enormous roast (ie 5 ribs, 10 lbs!), but you did state that you wanted to doit for yourself...

Note too, to select a roast with the least collagen (the white crud that doesn't cook out, because its not really "fat")(and doesn't taste good!), and avoid those roasts that have the sinewy stuff between the major muscles, as this does not add to the eating enjoyment...and picking the right (or wrong) piece of meat from the tub i the first right (or wrong!) thing you do...and your friend the Chef is likely locked on to a source of "first picks" leaving you a long string of seconds at the store...

Anyways, hope this helps...

By saying the doneness is different in the middle of the roast, was he by chance cooking over a (pardon my spelling) rotisserie?
I would recommend reading the transcript of this episode, which is chock full of wonderful nuggets of culinary knowledge:

Dry Aged Standing Rib Roast with Sage Jus
Recipe courtesy Alton Brown
Show:  Good Eats Episode:  Family Roast

Recipe Summary
Difficulty: Easy
Prep Time: 35 minutes
Inactive Prep Time: 3 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours
Yield: 10 servings

1 (4-bone-in) standing rib roast, preferably from the loin end
Canola oil, to coat roast
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to cover entire roast
1 cup water
1 cup red wine
4 fresh sage leaves

Remove any plastic wrapping or butcher's paper from the roast. Place the standing rib roast upright onto a half sheet pan fitted with a rack. The rack is essential for drainage. Place dry towels loosely on top of the roast. This will help to draw moisture away from the meat. Place into a refrigerator at approximately 50 to 60 percent humidity and between 34 and 38 degrees F. You can measure both with a refrigerator thermometer. Change the towels daily for 3 days.

Place a 16-inch round azalea terra cotta planter into a cold oven. Invert the planter to become a lid over a pizza stone or the bottom of the planter. The oven should be cold to start, to avoid any cracking in the terra cotta pieces. Turn the oven to 250 degrees F.

Remove the roast from the refrigerator and rub with canola oil. Remember to rub the bones with oil, as well. Once the roast is completely coated with oil cover the roast with kosher salt, about half a teaspoon per bone. Next, rub with freshly ground pepper to coat the surface. Place the roast over a glass bake-ware dish slightly smaller than the length of the roast. This will catch the drippings needed for the sauce. Finally, place a probe thermometer into the center of the roast and set for 118 degrees. Put the roast and the bake-ware dish onto the pizza stone, cover with the terra cotta pot, and return to the oven. Turn the oven down to 200 degrees F and roast until internal temperature is achieved.

Remove the roast and turn oven up to 500 degrees F. Remove the terra cotta lid and recover with heavy-duty foil. Allow the roast to rest until an internal temperature of 130 degrees F. is reached. Place the roast back into the preheated 500 degree F oven for about 10 minutes or until you've achieved your desired crust. Remove and transfer roast to a cutting board. Keep covered with foil until ready to serve.

Degrease the juices in the glass pan. Place the pan over low heat and deglaze with 1 cup of water. Add the wine and reduce by half. Roll the sage leaves in between your fingers to release the flavors and aroma. Add to the sauce and cook for 1 minute. Strain and serve on the side.
And just to reiterate, you cannot do this properly without a probe thermometer. It's an investment WELL worth making.
Thanks for strongly recommending the probe thermometer. At a standing rib roast's price currently approaches the Gross National Product of many third world countries, it is a shame to play guessing games with doneness.
Yeah... Really pricey... The butcher gave me the evil eye today at Acme because I was fogging up the glass staring wistfully at a Certified Angus rib roast. $6.99/lb! :cry:
Yeah... Really pricey... The butcher gave me the evil eye today at Acme because I was fogging up the glass staring wistfully in a Certified Angus rib roast. $6.99/lb! :cry:
Well, it's still too pricey for me. :cry:

*crawls under the bed to look for enough loose change to pick up a nice chuck roast he saw today*
LOL LMJ! Come up here to buy your beef...your $6.99 would go WAYYY farther. Although I think that is what I saw standing rib for a few days ago. Maybe $5.99.
We only smoke them.


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