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eG Cook-Off 74: Holiday Roasts


David Ross
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This was Christmas Day - I bought a Prime Rib Roast at Publican Quality Meats in Chicago - 65 day aged.  Fantastic.  The carving on the finished product was the result of too much red wine....and people getting aggresive about eating.....it was fabulous but almost too rich - I hate to say it, but I preferred the Chuck Roast....Also cooked via ChefSteps sous vide recipe.

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Edited by Unpopular Poet (log)
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  • 2 months later...

Easter Bank Holiday Monday Roast.

For Easter it should be lamb, but I already cooked roast lamb for the same family members last week on holiday. Hence, this:

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Pork loin. I always have trouble with the crackling so I cheated on one. The joint on the right was brushed with gin before rubbing with salt and pepper, the other was rubbed with S+P without other prep. The gin washed joint had a crisp crackling but it was rather flat. This is a failsafe for crackling, but it never turns out excellent. The other joint actually yielded perfect crackling this time- rather unsatisfactorily for me as I don't know what I did right this time. Anyway, it was much appreciated by my father in law and my 12 year old.

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Beets.

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Meat and potatoes with two veg. This is England.

Bit of Europe sneaking in as a small glug of truffle oil in the mash.

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Tarte Tatin to finish. I don't like pudding, so I'm not good with dessert.This one is hugely popular, and an easy win!

 

 

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For your crackling:  I always dry mine in the fridge for a full day after rubbing with salt and rubbing with vodka/gin.  Important for it to be dry.  The other option is if it doesn't get as crispy as you like during the meat roasting, you could cut it off and put it back in at a higher temperature or even under the broiler to be watched like a hawk so it doesn't burn.

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  • 2 years later...
On 11/26/2016 at 9:38 AM, David Ross said:

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A gargantuan haunch of beef for Christmas dinner, ca. 1957

 

As a child in the late 1950's, our Holiday table was graced with turkey at Thanksgiving.....and another turkey at Christmas.  It wasn't until the 1970's that my Father finally made good on his Christmas promise to "give us a Christmas Goose" by actually cooking one.  To this day, I remember how little meat there was and it was dark, tough and chewy.  We had indeed been given a Christmas Goose!  Yet in later years Father (who always coated the meat with some type of rub), and Mother (who cooked the roast), redeemed themselves and cooked regal prime ribs of beef for Christmas dinner.

 

The Holiday roast, (as my UK friend Helen calls it), is a thing of beauty and an adventure for cooks around the globe.  And while turkey and prime rib still reign supreme, I for one like to venture to the farm and forest to procure other delights for the Holiday roast.  Right now I have duck (which will be slow-roasted and served with prized wild huckleberries) and a leg of lamb in the freezer, but I'll be adding some wild Scottish grouse, wood pigeon and a fresh American ham to the larder for roasts throughout the Holiday season. 

 

Please join me in celebrating the Holiday roast with a special eG Cook-Off.  We place no boundaries or regulations on your cookery.  Whether it's sous vide, stuffed, smoked, barbecued or braised, roasted, grilled, broiled, fried or flamed, all manner of cooking techniques are welcome into the discussion and feast. 

 

See our complete Cook-Off Index here:

https://forums.egullet.org/topic/143994-egullet-recipe-cook-off-index/

 

It's the season to return to one of our favorite Cook-Off's, eG Cook-Off #74: Holiday Roasts.  Are you sticking with your traditional standards this year?  Turkey, Ham and Roast Beef?  Venturing into a crown roast of lamb or pork?  What about a wild game roast, or a whole fresh salmon roast?  A lobster roast for New Years?  Let's look back on what we were cooking in 2016 and what we plan, and cook, this Holiday season.

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On 1/17/2017 at 1:30 PM, Unpopular Poet said:

This was Christmas Day - I bought a Prime Rib Roast at Publican Quality Meats in Chicago - 65 day aged.  Fantastic.  The carving on the finished product was the result of too much red wine....and people getting aggresive about eating.....it was fabulous but almost too rich -

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This was our experience some 5 years ago.    Family unanimously rejected the "prime" grade standing rib beef roast as too rich to be enjoyable.    The following year, I switched to "choice" grade, but it still was too unctuous.    Since then, rather than patronize our excellent custom butcher, I go to Lucky supermarket and buy their holiday special standing rib roast, usually only around $5.99 a pound.    I dry marinate it in salt, pepper, olive oil, garlic, thyme, EVOO overnight and bring to room temperature for several hours before roasting, LOW AND SLOW, 275F for some 5 hours until internal temp of 125F, resting for 20 minute.    The result is a tender, robustly flavored, digestible roast.    Happy Campers, and many $$ saved.   

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On 10/26/2019 at 7:16 AM, Margaret Pilgrim said:

 

This was our experience some 5 years ago.    Family unanimously rejected the "prime" grade standing rib beef roast as too rich to be enjoyable.    The following year, I switched to "choice" grade, but it still was too unctuous.    Since then, rather than patronize our excellent custom butcher, I go to Lucky supermarket and buy their holiday special standing rib roast, usually only around $5.99 a pound.    I dry marinate it in salt, pepper, olive oil, garlic, thyme, EVOO overnight and bring to room temperature for several hours before roasting, LOW AND SLOW, 275F for some 5 hours until internal temp of 125F, resting for 20 minute.    The result is a tender, robustly flavored, digestible roast.    Happy Campers, and many $$ saved.   

Oh yeah.  That's a great way to cook a roast.  I use this also.  I put some little smashed potatoes in the air fryer to go with....toss them in some beef fat first.😁

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On ‎10‎/‎26‎/‎2019 at 10:16 AM, Margaret Pilgrim said:

 

This was our experience some 5 years ago.    Family unanimously rejected the "prime" grade standing rib beef roast as too rich to be enjoyable.    The following year, I switched to "choice" grade, but it still was too unctuous.    Since then, rather than patronize our excellent custom butcher, I go to Lucky supermarket and buy their holiday special standing rib roast, usually only around $5.99 a pound.    I dry marinate it in salt, pepper, olive oil, garlic, thyme, EVOO overnight and bring to room temperature for several hours before roasting, LOW AND SLOW, 275F for some 5 hours until internal temp of 125F, resting for 20 minute.    The result is a tender, robustly flavored, digestible roast.    Happy Campers, and many $$ saved.   

Interesting.   As this year I was thinking of splurging for one of those "prime" aged Prime Rib Roasts.   Now you have given me pause for the cause.

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Yesterday I came across a prime rib roast recipe I've tried in the past.  In a 550 oven for 20 minutes, then turn off the oven.  Leave the roast in and let it cook in the oven as it cools, 18 min per lb for medium rare.  I've tried it but honestly don't remember how successful it was.  My initial thought now is that it wouldn't give me the char, caramelized fatty crust I like.  Anyone else try this?  Would it work for a leg of lamb?

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10 hours ago, Owtahear said:

Interesting.   As this year I was thinking of splurging for one of those "prime" aged Prime Rib Roasts.   Now you have given me pause for the cause.

 

It is strictly dependent on your (family's) taste and tolerance for rich meat.    Both the prime and choice  grades roasts were excellent, just not to my group's taste and digestion.  

Edited by Margaret Pilgrim (log)

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9 hours ago, David Ross said:

Yesterday I came across a prime rib roast recipe I've tried in the past.  In a 550 oven for 20 minutes, then turn off the oven.  Leave the roast in and let it cook in the oven as it cools, 18 min per lb for medium rare.  I've tried it but honestly don't remember how successful it was.  My initial thought now is that it wouldn't give me the char, caramelized fatty crust I like.  Anyone else try this?  Would it work for a leg of lamb?

I've made Martha Stewart's Prime Rib. She starts at 450 to give it the crispy crust and then turns the temp down to 350 for the rest of the time in the oven.

It's that first 20 minutes that give it the crunchy crust. As long as you don't tent it with foil, the crust should stay crunchy. Never made leg of lamb so I can't tell you if your method in question would work.

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I've splurged on a prime grade prime rib roast once or twice. It's been fatty but good, and not too rich for our tastes. The Choice grade prime ribs have been less reliably good: sometimes tough, or not marbled properly.

 

I favor the fast-roast treatment: rub it with a spice mix (abetted by a coating of olive oil), then sear in the hottest pan I can get, then load into a 450F oven, uncovered. I pull it out at 110 - 115F internal temperature, usually at less than an hour's cooking time. I must admit that I've had prime rib that wasn't pink at all but was butter-knife tender and quite delicious, but when I cook it myself I prefer to have some rare meat in it.

 

Here's a decent photo from a few Thanksgivings ago. It was a bit rarer than we like in the very heart of the roast (I had pulled it out at 110F that time) but since there were only 2 of us I was able to reheat the leftovers later without overcooking them.

 

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On 11/1/2019 at 7:08 AM, David Ross said:

Yesterday I came across a prime rib roast recipe I've tried in the past.  In a 550 oven for 20 minutes, then turn off the oven.  Leave the roast in and let it cook in the oven as it cools, 18 min per lb for medium rare.  I've tried it but honestly don't remember how successful it was.  My initial thought now is that it wouldn't give me the char, caramelized fatty crust I like.  Anyone else try this?  Would it work for a leg of lamb?

I've done something similar.  It's a terrifying thing to do to an expensive cut of meat.  As a matter of fact, I named the recipe "Scary Prime Rib" on my recipe webpage😄.  The directions on my recipe say:

 

Make sure that your stove is fairly clean.
Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Turn on your fan and open all your windows.
Put the prime rib into an uncovered roasting pan on a rack.
Put it in the oven. Cook for 4 minutes per pound for rare, 5 minutes per pound for medium rare and 6 minutes per pound for medium. Then TURN OFF THE OVEN & DO NOT OPEN for 2 hours.

 

My notes say, "It was perfect.  Juicy, perfectly cooked and delicious!"  No idea if it would work for leg of lamb.  It would be worth a try, though.  

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I made a prime rib a few weeks ago (with fondant potatoes and creamed spinach *sigh*) - it was around 8lbs ... I’ve always used the “low and slow” method then broil about 3-4 minutes after rest for a nice crust ... pink edge to edge - was wonderful according to Mr Cat and Cat Son ... works every time ... I rub it lovingly and talk to it before I put it in the oven - I think that’s the key 😁

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Last year I created a new Thanksgiving turkey recipe using a method I had seen on America's Test Kitchen on PBS.  I modified it, but it turned out to be the best Thanksgiving turkey I have ever tasted. I missed the golden skin, but the meat is incredibly moist and tender and this makes the best gravy ever.  I've always preferred white turkey meat anyway, and miss gnawing on a cold turkey drumstick, but this is so delicious. Many will probably not being buying large roasts or turkeys this year, so give this recipe a try.

Dutch-Oven Braised Turkey Breast with Rich Herb Gravy.JPG

 

For the turkey-

1 6-7lb. bone-in turkey breast

trimmings from the turkey breast

salt and pepper

2 tbsp. oil

1 medium onion, chopped

3 carrots, peeled and diced

3 ribs of celery, diced

6 cloves garlic, smashed

1 bay leaf

3 sprigs each of fresh thyme, sage and rosemary

1 tbsp. black peppercorns

1 cup turkey stock

 

For the Herb Gravy-

2 tbsp. flour

2 cups turkey stock add additional stock to thin the gravy

salt and pepper to taste

 

Brown the turkey and braise in the Dutch Oven-

Place the oven rack on the lowest setting. Remove the other racks to allow space for the Dutch oven. Trim excess skin from the turkey breast. Using kitchen shears, cut off the lower rib bones. Cut and break off the bone on the large end of the turkey. You can leave the turkey untrimmed, but trimming allows it to sit upright in the Dutch oven. Season the turkey breast with salt and pepper.

 

Heat the oil in the Dutch Oven over medium heat on the stove top and brown the turkey breast on all sides, about 10 minutes. Remove the turkey breast to a plate while you cook the vegetables.

Add the onion, carrots, celery, garlic, bay leaf, thyme, sage, rosemary, and peppercorns to the Dutch Oven and sauté until soft, about 3 minutes. Pour in the 1 cup of turkey stock and turn off the heat. Place the turkey breast on top of the vegetables in the Dutch oven and cover the pot with aluminum foil. Place the lid on top of the foil and press the foil around the edge of the lid to create an air-tight seal. Place the pot in the oven and slow-braise for 2 hours or until the turkey breast registers 160 on a meat thermometer.

 

Remove the Dutch oven and place it on the stove top. Take the turkey breast out of the Dutch oven and place it on a cutting board. Tent the turkey with foil to keep it warm while you make the herb gravy.

 

Heat the stove top to medium and start cooking down the pan juices with the vegetables. After about 10 minutes, most of the liquid should be evaporated. At this point, stir in the flour to make a roux. When the flour is browned, start slowly adding the turkey stock, 1/2 cup at a time. As you add the stock, the mixture will become thick. Continue to slowly add stock and stir, scraping up any bits at the bottom of the Dutch oven. Once the gray is silky and smooth, strain it to remove the vegetables.

 

This step may take two people. The Dutch oven is heavy, so start by placing a strainer over a small sauce pot. Have someone hlep lift the Dutch oven and pour the gravy through the strainer to remove the vegetables. Keep the gravy warm over low heat.

 

Remove the skin from the turkey breast. Carve each turkey breast off the bone, then cut the turkey breast into thick slices and serve with the gravy. The leftover turkey is delicious in open-face hot sandwiches with gravy.

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  • 2 weeks later...

It seems appropriate the bump this topic back up here on Thanksgiving 2020 -- since many of us are doing a digital Thanksgiving anyway, there should be plenty of opportunity to post photos of today's roasting activities. Surely someone out there is still actually roasting a turkey today...

Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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