Beef Rib Eye Roast(s)

November 17, 2010

Beware vegans who enter. Rib eye roast is a carnivore’s rapture—almost as if a slab should be firmly grasped between hairy paws while gnawing away, all the while fending off famished guests. A beef rib roast where the 6th through the 12th rib bones are removed leaving just the rib eye muscle, this marbled cut can stand alone. A roast that indulges without much embellishment.

And please take no offense vegetarian friends. Hopefully, there should be no bones to pick. I simply remain an ardent, steadfast omnimvore who savors species from both plant and animal kingdoms.

Two cardinal rules: (1) have the butcher freshly carve the roast to your specs and liking; and (2) take care not to overcook as the roast can quickly turn from carnal nirvana into bland leather. Just keep a keen eye on the internal temperatures.

As noted below, my preference is for a bone-in version. However, you will need adequate table numbers for that.


3 C chicken broth
2 C beef broth
2 C port

3 T butter, softened
3 T all-purpose flour

12 large shallots, peeled and halved lengthwise
Extra virgin olive oil, to coat
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

3 lb. boneless rib eye roast, freshly cut and patted dry
4 plump, fresh garlic cloves, peeled and minced
4 sprigs fresh thyme leaves, stems discarded and minced
3 T dijon mustard
1 T prepared hot horseradish cream
Sea salt and coarsely ground fresh pepper

Preheat oven to 425 F

In a large, heavy sauce pan, boil port and stock until mixture is reduced to about half (3 1/2 cups). Once cooled some, pour into a bowl and set aside.

With your fingers knead butter and flour together in a small bowl to form a smooth paste (beurre manié). Set aside.

In a large bowl, season shallots with salt and pepper and toss in olive oil. Set aside

In a medium bowl, mix together the garlic, thyme, dijon mustard and horseradish.

Season meat with salt and pepper and slather with mustard mixture. In a large roasting pan, cook rib eye, fat side up, for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 F and continue roasting until done, about 1 hour. After 20 minutes, add the shallots in the roasting pan. While cooking, stir shallots around occasionally and baste. You may even want to add a little stock and port during the roasting process.

Cook until roast is done and remove shallots to a bowl with a slotted spoon. From an internal read thermometer, the temperature of the roast should be 125 F when removed. Remove meat and allow to rest on a cutting board, loosely tented in foil, for 20 minutes. It will continue to cook while resting and should reach a temperature of about 130 F for medium rare before carving.

Meanwhile, place roasting pan over high heat on stove on two burners. Add port/broth mixture and bring to boil, scraping up any browned bits. Strain and transfer pan sauce to a medium, heavy saucepan and bring to a simmer. Remove saucepan from heat, and vigorously whisk in the beurre manié a spoonful at a time into the port/broth mixture for a few minutes until sauce thickens. If the sauce should thicken before using all of the beurre manié, simply stop adding more. Stir in roasted shallots and season to taste.

Carve roast to your liking and serve with shallot and port sauce. Consider gratin dauphinois, puréed potatoes and turnips, artisanal noodles and a cooked or fresh green of your calling. Pairing with a luscious, full bodied red goes without saying.

Pourboire: should you do the right thing and opt for a bone-in roast, it will likely be four ribs across and weigh in at about 9-10 lbs. In a large roasting pan, cook rib eye 20 minutes at 450. Reduce heat to 350 F and continue roasting until an instant-read thermometer inserted into center (not touching bone) registers 110 F, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours after the original high temperature roasting. Transfer to platter and let rest, slightly tented, at least 20 minutes when temperature will again rise to about 130 F for medium rare.