Tuesday, January 1, 2008

New Years Eve 2007-Best Meal Yet!

Perhaps fittingly, I think we ended 2007 with what was one of my best meals of the year. I made my first standing rib roast and it came out perfectly. The preparation could not have been more simple-salt and pepper. The cooking method involved roasting the beef at three different temperatures which produced a perfectly cooked roast. The mustard horseradish sauce was a perfect complement. For sides, I also went simply, Ina's Sauteed Carrots and Paula Deen's Boursin Potatoes. The carrots were probably the best I have ever had. The cooking method really enhanced the flavor of the carrots. I was suspect that a carrot recipe could be amazing but this one was. The Boursin potatoes were very rich but simple to prepare. We enjoyed a wonderful candlelight dinner and even finally used our china! My husband proclaimed this a five-star meal and I would agree! We cheated for dessert and purchased a delicious triple chocolate mousse. All in all a great way to ring in 2008! Happy New Year!

Sunday Rib Roast
Recipe Courtesy of Ina Garten

1 (3-rib) standing rib roast (7 to 8 pounds)
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
Mustard Horseradish Sauce, recipe follows
Two hours before roasting, remove the meat from the refrigerator and allow it to come to room temperature.

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (see note).

Place the oven rack on the second lowest position.

Place the roast in a pan large enough to hold it comfortably, bone-side down, and spread the top thickly with the salt and pepper. Roast the meat for 45 minutes. Without removing the meat from the oven, reduce the oven temperature to 325 degrees F and roast for another 30 minutes. Finally, increase the temperature to 450 degrees F and roast for another 15 to 30 minutes, until the internal temperature of the meat is 125 degrees F. (Be sure the thermometer is exactly in the center of the roast.) The total cooking time will be between 1 1/2 and 1 3/4 hours. Meanwhile, make the sauce.

Remove the roast from the oven and transfer it to a cutting board. Cover it tightly with aluminum foil and allow the meat to rest for 20 minutes. Carve and serve with the sauce.

Note: Be sure your oven is very clean before setting it at 500 degrees F.

Mustard Horseradish Sauce:
1 1/2 cups good mayonnaise
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 1/2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
1/3 cup sour cream
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Whisk together the mayonnaise, mustards, horseradish, sour cream, and salt in a small bowl.

Sauteed Carrots
Recipe Courtesy of Ina Garten

2 pounds carrots
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill or flat-leaf parsley (I used parsley)

Peel the carrots and cut them diagonally in 1/4-inch slices. You should have about 6 cups of carrots. Place the carrots, 1/3 cup water, the salt, and pepper in a large (10 to 12-inch) saute pan and bring to a boil. Cover the pan and cook over medium-low heat for 7 to 8 minutes, until the carrots are just cooked through. Add the butter and saute for another minute, until the water evaporates and the carrots are coated with butter. Off the heat, toss with the dill or parsley. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve.

Boursin Cheese Potatoes
Recipe Courtesy of Paula Deen

3 lbs red potatoes, unpeeled
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 pint heavy cream
1 5 oz package Boursin cheese
Fresh chives or parsley chopped (I used chives)

Preheat oven to 350. Wash and slice potatoes into 1/4 inch thick rounds. (I used the food processor to ensure even results and to speed up the chopping). Toss potatoes with salt and pepper. Heat cream and cheese together on top of stove or in microwave, until cheese has melted. Stir mixture until thoroughly blended. Layer half of the potatoes into a 2 quart baking dish (this is best in a deep dish instead of a long, flat dish). Cover potatoes with half of the cream mixture. Repeat with remaining potatoes and cream mixture. Cover and bake 1 hour. Sprinkle with chopped chives or parsley.

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