Celebratory and holiday traditions are generally great to have. Holiday traditions bring family and friends together,sometimes for the first time they’ve seen each other in months or even years. And while that’s the most important feature of those traditions, there’s more to them than the guest list. Turkey at Thanksgiving, for instance. Turkey tastes really good, which doesn’t hurt, but it’s at least as much about the ritual of carving and the expectation of and nostalgia for a turkey feast as it is about the feast itself.
All that being said, and acknowledging how great traditions tend to be, who says that you have to celebrate other peoples’ traditions? While the comfortable familiarity and predictability of them is a big part of their charm, the great thing about traditions is that you can make your own. And when you do, there’s a good chance you’ll find them even more fun, special, and important than the ones you inherited. That, and the fact that some people just like the taste of rich, tender, dry-aged beef more than they do turkey, are great reasons to make your own Thanksgiving tradition this year by serving prime rib instead of poultry.
Why Prime Rib?
First and foremost, when prepared, cooked, seasoned with salt and pepper, and served properly, there’s almost nothing that tastes as good as prime rib. That seasoned-sear crust surrounding one of the most delicious cuts of pink, succulent, velvety beef available, finished with its au jus… it’s incomparable.
Prime rib also lends itself to the existing template for the Thanksgiving feast. Like turkey, it slow-cooks, giving everyone time to chat, mingle, and catch up while being entranced by the incredible aroma wafting from the oven. Once the rib roast is finished, the host, or whoever is awarded the spot at the head of the table, can fulfill the meat-carving ritual as they would have with a turkey. A substantial rib roast provides a lot of food that feeds a lot of people, usually with enough remaining for leftovers (another excellent part of the holiday).
How to Cook It
Cooking prime rib is pretty easy. Season it generously with pepper and larger crystal-sized salt, like kosher salt, and-or your favorite prime rib rub or paste. The experts insist that if you have a top-shelf prime rib roast, one that cuts as easy as tenderloin steak when cooked, a salt and pepper rub alone is both sufficient and recommended. Those same experts suggest bone-in roasts for optimal juiciness, tenderness, and flavor; though bone-in cuts can sometimes be a bit harder to slice.
A conventional prep method for an amazing prime rib is as follows. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Put the prime rib roast in a rack, the fat side up. The rule of thumb for cooking time is 15-20 minutes for every pound of roast. That’s a good guideline, but shouldn’t be used as a definitive timeline. Use a thermometer to more precisely determine doneness. For a rare roast, take it out of the oven when the internal temperature is 110 degrees. A temperature of 120 degrees is medium rare, and 130 degrees is medium.
If those temperatures seem a little low, it’s because the roast is going to be left to rest for at least half an hour, in which time the temperature will rise about 10 degrees. After its half an hour rest, your Thanksgiving prime rib is ready to be served, and a delicious new tradition established.
About Snake River Farms
Producing flavor only 50 years of experience can bring, Snake River Farms has focused on producing the best-tasting beef this country has to offer. Thankfully for both this family-owned business and anyone lucky enough to have tasted the legacy of that commitment, they have succeeded. They’ve accomplished this with a dedication to ensuring the absolute highest standards of quality, sustainable beef-raising, and seeing to the well-being of their animals. Being involved every step of the way, from their standards for raising cattle to their process for creating dry-aged beef, means that every cut is perfection.
Discover the best of what beef can be at Snakeriverfarms.com