In a bit of a surprise, Christmas morning dawned with the first snowfall of the season. This first snowfall was unusually late, and fairly welcome, given that the landscaping for our new house is on hold til the spring thaw, and it’s better to look at a blanket of white snow rather than a mud pit.
Dinner preparations for about 20 guests began early. The prime rib and ham were pulled from the refrigerator by 10:00 AM to bring it up to room temperature before it was popped in the oven. The 10 pound ham went in at 11:30, the 14 pound prime rib went in at noon.
I followed both my gut instinct, as well as the recommendations of my fellow food bloggers, and I put the prime rib into a preheated oven at 500 degrees, dropping the oven temperature to 250 after 15 minutes, and letting it slow roast. But more on that later…
Ten pounds of potatoes were peeled by the volunteer parents who showed up early and assisted in the preparations. (And fed the puppy everything in sight, too… but that’s a different story that I’ll spare you all from.) The main dining table was set up in the dining room, with the secondary (children’s table) set up in the dinette nook.
The prime rib roasted exactly as expected (hoped for?), rising to 120 degrees by 2:30 PM. It was pulled from the oven and wrapped tightly in foil. In the meantime, guests ate various appetizers (and so did the puppy, once again using her cute little puppy face to convince people that she was deserving. But I digress).
The Viking cooktop performed admirably, though disappointingly I didn’t use every single burner! Something to shoot for, I guess. Peas with pearl onions and Pancetta, broccoli with cauliflower and cheese sauce, potatoes for mashing, and au jus cooked away as the prime rib rested.
Then it was time to carve the meat. It had rested for more than 30 minutes, wrapped in foil. This is always a bit of a stressful moment. Will it be way too rare? Will it be cooked to shoe leather consistency? Making that first slice is always a bit hard to do.
But I’m pleased to say that the slow roasting method came through. The prime rib was perfectly cooked! Oh, yeah, the ham turned out fine too.
And the puppy was so full of appetizers and cookies that she couldn’t even bring herself to care that people were eating prime rib for dinner. Her puppy tummy was on the verge of exploding, and she was forced into a food-induced coma because everyone kept feeding her off-limits food.