Christmas Day dinner with friends began the day before with the arrival of a hefty 3-rib prime rib roast. We knew that to sous vide a roast this size would take many, many hours, so it was necessary to have it handy Christmas morning to start the sous vide process.
It's gotten to be our tradition to have Christmas dinner with our friend David (ever since Steven had foot surgery Christmas Eve a few years back). In exchange for us cooking dinner, David provides the most wonderful prime rib roasts. He gets them at Metropolitan Market in West Seattle. This year's roast is from the blade end so it has a little more marbling - perfect! See our earlier post for tips on buying your rib roasts:
We consulted two websites for information and recipes on all-things sous vide: ChefSteps and Anova Culinary. We bought the Joule sold by ChefSteps, and that gave us access to their Premium area that contains extensive resources and training videos as well as other opportunities the Joule team dreams of. Plus we just like that ChefSteps is local, located in our very own Pike Place Market.
From a web search for sous vide prime rib recipes, we landed back at ChefSteps. Here’s the link to their herb crusted (prime) rib roast recipe, which they say was inspired by their own traditional rib roast recipe. At this writing, we’re having difficulty accessing the link on the iPad, but it works just fine on the iPhone, Samsung Galaxy, and MacBook Air. Hey Joule Team, you might want to look into this.
|ChefSteps||Variation||Temp & Time|
|-1 Prime rib (rib roast), about 3 ribs||Ours was a “chuck” or blade end roast with 3 ribs, but the butcher cut it close to the 4th rib giving us more meaty goodness. Complete with herb crust.||128F, 7 hours. ChefSteps meat guide places this in the Medium Rare category, just as we like it.
Timing was a bit longer than ChefSteps says (their’s puts it between 3 and 5 hours). We were having too much pre-dinner fun and just that puppy sit in the water, knowing it wouldn’t over cook.
Love this about sous vide!
The prep time takes a lot longer that you might think. That’s why we opted for a pre-prepped roast, saving us probably an hour or so. Remember, we’re novices at preparing such a large roast, it might take you a lot less time.
Before going into the sous vide, ChefSteps recommends browning it on all sides. This just takes maybe 3 minutes on each side – about 10-12 minutes total.
Be careful not to burn the roast so use a lower temp than we would in searing fish for instance.
-Rosemary-garlic (3 cloves crushed)
-One sprig, cut in two pieces
-4 cloves crushed
|For herb crust:
-Herbs (fresh such as rosemary and thyme)
-Black pepercorns, whole
-Salt, Maldonado flake
-1 egg white
|-We skipped this entirely as our roast was pre-herbed from the butcher.|
|-To french or not?||Nope, no Frenching for us.|
|-Scoring sides||Nope, didn’t do this either. Sounded too complicated, plus we didn’t French it so we thought to skip this.|
|-Separating Bones||Once again, we didn’t need this step as our butcher already took the rib bones off the roast and tied the roast back together.|
|-Removing membrane||We seriously thought about this step, and…yep, decided to skip it. No particular reason expect we were not feeling too motivated Christmas morning what with all the presents to open and such.|
- Salt & pepper
- cooking oil
|After seasoning roast on all sides, sear in pan over medium heat. We used a cast iron pan, which heats evenly and keep the heat longer than other pans we have.
This smokes up the house, so turn up the exhaust fan to high!
|Bag it and get it going||We don’t have sous vide bags, so we doubled bagged it in oven roasting bags. ChefSteps cautions against using regular zip close freezer bags for longer cooking as the seams my give out.
Otherwise, we followed their guidelines and placed the roast in the inner bag along with the rosemary springs and crushed garlic.
We used the water seal method since we don’t have a sealer (submerge the bag in water to force the air out then fold and clip to seal). This works just fine.
- 4-6 hours
|7 hours was our total time in the sous vide.||Even at this length of time, the roast felt a little too squishy. We feared it would be European rare, which is cool…not something we like.|
- 475F oven for 5-15 minutes
|Oven sear for 10 minutes.||Our roast was PERFECTLY cooked, but we wanted a little extra crisp, so we put the roast in the oven as ChefSteps suggested|
|Sauce||This got a little interesting. We kept the juices from the roasting bag and used it as the base for our sauce.||
I had a little kitchen accident – knocking the sauce pan off the stove. Maybe it was being bowled over by the beauty of the roast, or it could have been due to the glasses of wine consumed during oysters and our first course.
Luckily I had a back-up sauce from another meal and just enhanced it with what was salvaged from the spill.
The roast ready to start in the sous vide bath:
This was probably the most delicious, tender, perfectly cooked rib roast we’ve ever cooked or had at a restaurant. Honestly, it was. We’re not kidding.
We had plenty of left overs from the four of us, and that was with a couple of people going back for seconds. Alas, my sauce didn’t last.
Accompanying our Christmas Day meal was a potato-noodle savory kugel and roasted carrots and green beans seasoned with garlic, salt, pepper and Harissa.
We can’t recommend sous vide cooking enough. Since getting our Joule a month or so ago, we’ve experimented with several meals, most turned out exceptionally well. Go get yourself one of these, it’s not just kitchen toy, it’s really very useful as an all-around tool for the home cook.