Category Archives: Holiday

Prime Rib with Garlic Cheddar Mashed Potatoes

The absolute best Prime Rib I’ve ever had!

I first experienced Prime Rib as a kid on vacation in Wisconsin. The ” Supper Clubs” of northern Wisconsin usually offered Prime Rib as the special on Saturday nights and featured wonderful salad bars with home made three bean salad, pickled beets and homemade dressings. Sadly most of these supper clubs have closed or removed the salad bars. Several years ago I decided to try my hand at Prime Rib based on James Beard’s “low heat method” James Beard liked his meat succulent, on the rare side and simply cooked. I like my beef roast cooked to medium rare. serve the outer pieces to folks that like their meat a little more done. I took Jame’s Beard’s recipe and added a few things to make it my own.

My mom and Aunt Boo make some of the best mashed potatoes in the world! Obviously I try to duplicate them and come very close. Well…. I decided to come up with my own recipe for mashed potatoes. Garlic Cheddar Mashed Potatoes were my masterpiece.

The Prime Rib Roast


5-10 Pound boneless or standing rib roast

5-8 sprigs rosemary leaves removed; it is a complete waste of time to use dried rosemary!

4-6 tbsps fresh thyme leaves removed or 2 tbsps dried

3-6 cloves garlic depending on size of roast

1/4 cup olive oil or 1/4 cup softened butter

1 tbsp cracked black pepper.

Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Make sure to bring your roast to room temperature considering the size. Combine rosemary, thyme, garlic and black pepper in a food processor and pulse to chop. Add olive or butter until you achieve a rough paste. Rub paste all over your roast in generous amounts. Place roast fat side up on a shallow rack in your roasting pan. Roast uncovered for 28 minutes per pound for medium rare. Do not trust the minutes per pound; check your roast with a meat thermometer after the theoretical halfway point. At the halfway point add a little water to your pan to help lift the drippings from your pan to be used in the “Au Jus” I pull my roast between 130 and 135 degrees at the extreme center. remove roast from pan and let rest under foil while you finish the potatoes and prepare the Au Jus.

The Au Jus

Scrape the bottom of the roasting pan adding liquid if needed. transfer to a sauce pan and add enough liquid to bring you to about 5-6 cups. Stir in beef base to taste (1-2 tbsps) or to taste. I use Minor’s Beef Base by the Nestle Co. Heat to a boil then turn down to simmer.

The Garlic Cheddar Potatoes


3-4 pounds red potatoes cut into even sized pieces

2-6 cloves of garlic

1-2 cups high quality shredded medium sharp cheddar cheese; I used Tillamook brand.

1/2 stick butter or more

3 tbsps heavy cream or vitamin D milk

Salt and Black Pepper to taste

In a stock cover potatoes and garlic with cold water and bring to a boil. Test for doneness by tasting the potato. Remove and drain in a colander. combine potatoes, garlic, butter and cream. Mash by hand and fold in your cheese and salt & pepper. Keep warm in your 200 degree oven.

Carve the roast to generous portions and side with the Garlic Cheddar Potatoes. Ladle hot  Au Jus over meat and potatoes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper if needed.

This is one of the top ten meals I have ever prepared!



Roast Young Turkey with Pinot Grigio Tarragon Gravy

Cooked perfectly!

Succelent Roast Young Turkey

1 small turkey 10-12 pounds brought to room temperature

4-5 celery ribs

Tarragon & Garlic Bulb

8-10 whole carrots

1 large onion quartered

10 sprigs fresh tarragon

1 bulb garlic roasted whole with turkey wrapped in foil (add a little olive oil in the foil)

Salt & Pepper

For The Gravy


Turkey Neck, liver & gibletsTips of the wing cut off with kitchen shears or knife

1/2 bottle of Pinot Grigio

1/2 carrot not peeled

1/4 onion

10 Peppercorns

3 sprigs tarragon

large pinch of salt

6 tsp corn starch dissolved in 1/2 cup water.

Tip: The Starch will settle at the bottom if left alone; you will need to stir with a whisk before adding it to the gravy.

In a medium sauce sauce pan heat 1/2 bottle of wine, 3 sprigs tarragon, neck, liver, gizzard and the very tips of the wings (you will need to cut these off with shears). Cover with water if the wine is not enough. Simmer covered for 2-2 1/2 hours. The should pull apart easy and the carrots should be soft. Strain the liquid through a colander and discard the vegetables.  At this point you have a decision to make.

Do you…

A: Eat the Neck, liver, heart and gizzard as a snack.


B: Cut up all the meat very fine and add them back into the liquid for the finished gravy.

No matter what you choose; both decisions will bring you equal enjoyment! Set the pan with the gravy stock aside and cover. After the turkey has been in the oven for 1 1/2 hours, take out the head of garlic and squeeze it into the gravy stock when cooled. When the turkey is done and rested for 15 minutes; pour all the drippings and liquid from the roasting into the pan with the gravy stock. Turn on the heat to medium high and bring to a very light boil. When you have achieved a light boil, add the corn starch a little at at time stirring constantly. Liquids and starches achieve the greatest thickening potential at the boiling point. Give your gravy a chance to thicken up. If you need  to make more starch/water mixture you can do that very quickly. Once thickened the gravy is done.

Prepping the Turkey

Rinse turkey inside and out removing neck and giblets. Let dry; salt and pepper the inside of the bird. Drizzle olive oil over the turkey and rub on all sides. Salt and pepper the entire turkey. In a large roasting pan place the turkey on a rack breast side down and stuff the turkey with a little onion, tarragon, celery and carrot. Do not over stuff.

Roasting The Turkey

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.   Roast uncovered in the oven for 45 minutes Take pan out of the oven and rotate the turkey to breast side up; rub with olive oil and replace any salt and pepper. Insert a remote thermometer into the thickest part of the breast and put pan back into oven until the temperature reads 160-165. Remove pan and check joints for doneness. If you cook the turkey above 165 degree, you will be sorry. Don’t blame me; you screwed up!  Some people cover their turkey with foil but I like a crispy skin. I even raise the temperature to 425 when the turkey is almost done.

Let the turkey rest for 15-20 minute while you finish the gravy. Transfer all vegetables to a serving dish and cover.


Very easy to remove the breast and carve.

For most people, carving the the breast is done with the grain instead of against. This goes against everything we know about carving meat. The best and easiest way to carve the breast is to simply remove it and lay it flat on the cutting board. Cut into 1/2 inch steaks. Your turkey will be much more tender. Do not however, pull this nonsense with your mom’s, grandmothers, and aunts on Thanksgiving day. You will likely be stabbed with the carving knife or banished to the “Kiddie Table” for eternity. They are not ready for this and will never admit it’s better.

Sirloin Tip Roast with Oven Browned Vegetables

Sirloin Tip Roast cooked exactly the way I like it!

Sirloin Tip Roast with Oven Browned Vegetables


3-5 Pound Sirloin Tip Roast, rump or round round roast

2 pounds Idaho potatoes wedged

1 pound carrots cut in half peeled or unpealed

2 onions quartered

5 ribs celery cut in half

1 whole bulb garlic with outer skin pealed off

Salt & pepper

The Roast & Vegetables

In a large roasting pan combine all ingredients except the roast and drizzle with olive oil. With your hands toss and mix all vegetables to coat with oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and mix again. Put the roasting pan with vegetables in a 350 degree oven uncovered for 30 minutes. Coat the roast with olive oil and rub all over. Sprinkle with salt & pepper on all sides.  Make sure you take the roast out of the refrigerator at least an hour or up to 2 hours before cooking. This will allow for even cooking.

After your vegetables have cooked for 30 minutes uncovered, take out the pan and place the roast in the center of the pan moving the vegetables to the side. Cover the roasting pan, reduce the heat to 325 and cook for 1 hour. Take out the roasting pan after an hour to rotate (turn over) the roast and remove the head of garlic. With a meat thermometer check for temperature. I shoot for 135 in the center of the roast. This is the ideal temperature to remove for medium rare. Your roast should not be done at this point. My roast was about 110 degrees at the 1 hour point. This will differ depending on the size. You really need to do this quickly so the roast doesn’t begin to cool. At this point I insert a remote thermometer into the side of the roast to reach the center. Place the roast uncovered back into the oven until you reach 135-140 or your desired temperature. Beef roasts typically become tough after 135-140 degrees. Bring the thermometer with you until the temperature reads 135. Remove the roast to a bowl and cover with foil. The roast will expel a little juice, use this in the gravy. Put the vegetables back into the oven for 30 more minutes and raise the heat to 350 or 375; this will brown the vegetables. Remove the vegetables to a covered dish. There should be some liquid left in the roasting pan. If not add a little hot water and scrape drippings off the bottom of the pan. Pour the liquid from the pan into your gravy; This is not an option. The flavor from the roast and vegetables is essential to the gravy’s flavor.

The Gravy


Beef base or bouillon  (Miners Brand)

1-2 sprigs fresh thyme or 1/2 tsp dried

4 cups of water

1 head roasted garlic

Cracked pepper to taste.

6 tbsp corn starch with half cup of water mixed well.

Tip: The corn starch will settle in the water very quickly making it necessary to mix well before adding to broth every time!

In a sauce pan squeeze roasted garlic into the 4 cups of water and beef base. I used about one and one half tablespoons. Add the base in increments until you reach the desired flavor. Use 1 bouillon cube per cup of water. Turn up the heat to just under medium and let cook for 30 minutes uncovered. Remove the sprigs of thyme and add your corn starch water mixture. Make sure you stir the corn starch and water before adding a little at a time until thickened. Add juices from the roasting pan and bowl where the roast is resting. More corn starch may be needed to thicken the broth or just turn up the heat and let it cook off. You will need to stir constantly at this point. The roasted garlic makes this gravy “Over The Top”!

Slice the roast thin and ladle gravy over the beef and vegetables. Some nice bread or dinner rolls are a must to soak up the gravy.

This was the best roast I have ever made. Enjoy!

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