Merry Christmas, everyone! Welcome to Djalali Cooks on this Christmas Eve, 2020. I think it’s safe to say that we are all eager to ring in 2021. For Alex and me, this year has been weird; but there have been many positive and happy moments too. 2020 will always be the year of the Pandemic. But for us, it’s also the year we moved into our first house; it’s the year I launched this blog. Friends got married; friends had babies. I could go on, but my point is that even in the darkest times, we must be hopeful; celebratory of the things we are grateful for. So, even if the only thing you want to celebrate is the end of 2020, let’s do it right! And what’s more celebratory than a Prime Rib Dinner?
I’m not sure what I was more excited about; the Prime Rib or the the Hasselback Potato Gratin. Probably both! Let’s start with the Prime Rib. The trick to getting a beautifully roasted Prime Rib is to go slow and low, roasting to temperature, not time.
The Prime Rib
Three hours before you want to put it in the oven, let it sit out on the counter to come up to room temperature. Then, half an hour before oven time, give it a generous coating of your favorite meat rub. Be sure to cover all sides, patting the rub into the meat. Set it bone side down on a rimmed sheet tray. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
We have a 7 pound Rib Roast. We will roast this at 400 degrees for 20 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 225 and insert a probe thermometer. It’s ready when the internal temperature hits 120 degrees.
If you don’t have the type of probe thermometer that you can leave in the meat and get temp notifications, plan on 15-18 minutes per pound and check the internal temperature after 1 hour of roasting at 225. Then, keep checking every half hour until the internal temp reads 120 degrees. Let the Roast rest for at least 20 minutes before slicing.
The Roast lifted right off the bones after resting for 20 minutes. But if your’s doesn’t lift right off the ribs, just slice the Roast off the bones before carving.
Hasselback Potato Gratin
I found this recipe on the New York Times Cooking site, and I have to say, it’s truly delicious. Totally worth the effort. You can make this before you start your Prime Rib and cook it up until the last stage of baking, then pop it in the oven to finish off while your Roast rests.
Start by preheating the oven to 400 degrees. Prep the cheeses, garlic, fresh thyme and potatoes. If your potatoes are medium to small sized, start by slicing 8-10 potatoes. Finely grate the Gruyere and Parmesan cheeses and mix them together. Then pull out about 1/3 of the mixed cheeses and set aside until the last stage of baking.
Once your potatoes are fully coated with the creamy cheese mixture, grab a handful of potato slices and form a stack. Line the baking dish with the potato stacks sitting vertically. Pack the potato slices tightly.
I ran out of sliced potatoes three times! So be sure to keep your potato slicing station accessible so you can slice more potatoes and coat them in the cream mixture as needed to fill the whole dish with potatoes. In the end, I used 4 pounds of potatoes. Then, pour the remaining cream mixture over the potatoes. Fill until the cream mixture comes up halfway in the baking dish.
I did not have much cream mixture left, so I added about 1/4 cup more cream to get my cream mixture to come up just below halfway. You may have the opposite problem, with too much cream mixture left. If this is the case for you, only use enough of the remaining mixture to come up halfway.
Cover and bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes. Then uncover and bake for 30 more minutes. At this point, you can pull it out altogether and roast your Prime Rib. Once the Roast comes out of the oven, get the oven temp back up to 400 degrees. Sprinkle the reserved cheese over the potatoes and bake, uncovered for 30 minutes. Let the potatoes sit for 10 minutes before serving.
Plate it up!
We added a little side salad of dressed arugula, which is a great bitter, peppery green to balance out the richness of the Prime Rib and the Hasselback Gratin.
Prime Rib is a special thing. I think this is true in general, but for us it brings up fond memories of celebrating birthdays at the House of Prime Rib in San Francisco. For me personally, my family has been going there for family birthdays and anniversaries as far back as the early 1950’s. It was a fun coincidence that Alex has his own memories of celebrating there too! So as a couple, we would go there to make our own celebration memories.
Thank you all for joining me on this Christmas Eve! Because the holiday falls on Friday, Pizza and a Movie will be back next week. But if you’re looking for a holiday movie to watch, check out last week’s Pizza and a Movie. I will see you all here again on Sunday with a New Year’s Day Recipe for Sunday Supper. Follow me on Instagram, facebook and Pinterest for more holiday fun! I wish you all very Happy Christmas! Take care, be well, xo Kelly
Prime Rib Holiday Dinner
A perfect celebratory dinner for the holidays. Beautifull Hasselback Potato Gratin.
- 3 oz. Gruyère cheese, finely grated
- 2 oz. Parmigiano-Reggiano, finely grated
- 2 cups Heavy Cream + more if needed at end of mixing
- 2 medium Cloves of Garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp. Fresh Thyme Leaves, roughly chopped
- Kosher salt and Black Pepper to taste
- 4 lbs. Russet Potatoes, peeled and sliced 1/8-inch thick on a mandoline slicer (8-10 small to medium potatoes)
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter, to grease pan
- Prime Rib
- 1 7-8 lb. Rib Roast
- Your Favorite Meat Rub or, Kosher Salt, Pepper and Garlic
Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 400 degrees.
Combine cheeses in a large bowl.
Transfer 1/3 of cheese mixture to a separate bowl and set aside.
Add cream, garlic and thyme to cheese mixture.
Season generously with salt and pepper. Add potato slices and toss with your hands until every slice is coated with cream mixture.
Grease a 2-quart casserole dish with butter.
Pick up a handful of potatoes, organizing them into a neat stack, and lay them in the casserole dish with their edges aligned vertically. Tightly pack the potatoes. If necessary, slice an additional potato, coat with cream mixture, and add to casserole.
Pour the excess cream/cheese mixture evenly over the potatoes until the mixture comes halfway up the sides of the casserole. You may not need all the excess liquid. Or you may need to add 1/4 cup cream to the mixture.
Cover dish and transfer to the oven. Bake for 30 minutes.
Remove cover and continue baking for 30 minutes.
Remove from oven, sprinkle with remaining cheese, and bake until deep golden brown and crisp on top, about 30 minutes longer.
Remove from oven, let rest for 10 minutes, and serve.
Three hours before you want to put the Roast in the oven, let it sit out on the counter to come up to room temperature. Then, half an hour before oven time, give it a generous coating of your favorite meat rub. Be sure to cover all sides, patting the rub into the meat. Set it bone side down on a rimmed sheet tray. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
Roast at 400 degrees for 20 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 225 and insert a probe thermometer. It's ready when the internal temperature hits 120 degrees.
Plan on 15-18 minutes per pound and check the internal temperature after 1 hour of roasting at 225.
Then, keep checking every half hour until the internal temp reads 120 degrees.
Let the Roast rest for at least 20 minutes before slicing.