Standing Rib Roast with Blackberry-Cabernet Reduction

Standing Rib Roast with Blackberry-Cabernet Reduction uses a reverse browning technique that I learned from

Standing Rib Roast with Blackberry-Cabernet Reduction
(Mark Kelly, 2016)

Serves 10-12

For the Blackberry-Cabernet Reduction:
18 oz. fresh blackberries
3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
4 stalks of celery, roughly chopped
4 medium carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
1 large yellow onion, roughly chopped
10 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
4 Tbsp tomato paste
6 cups beef broth
2 cups Cabernet Sauvignon
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
3 bay leaves
2 Tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
8 Tbsp unsalted butter at room temperature
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

2 6-bone standing rib beef roasts (dry aged for at least one week, fat cap trimmed to 1/4″ thick
12 large garlic cloves, finely grated
12 large garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
1 cup rosemary leaves
6 Tbsp fennel seeds, finely ground
4 Tbsp dried minced onions
3 Tbsp Seasoned salt
2 Tbsp freshly ground black pepper
4-6 fresh thyme sprigs
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
3 carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
2 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

To prepare Reduction: Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Add the carrot, celery, and onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables begin to brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes. Add the blackberries and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes, until the berries soften and release their juice. Reduce the heat to medium. Add the tomato paste and cook stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes. Add the broth, wine, vinegar, bay leaves, rosemary, and fresh black pepper. Mix well. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 45 minutes.

Strain the sauce through a fine mesh sieve into a medium saucepan pressing down on the solid with a wooden spoon. Continue to simmer until the sauce is reduced by about half, about 45 minutes. The sauce can be made to this point and refrigerated for up to 3 days ahead of time. To finish the sauce, over low heat, whisk in the butter, one tablespoon at a time. Reseason with salt and pepper and remove from heat.

Working in batches, scatter rosemary over a paper towel-lined microwave safe plate. Microwave on high for 1 minute. Check rosemary and continue to microwave for 20 second intervals, until dry and crisp. Grind the rosemary in a spice mill or coffee grinder. Add fennel seeds and dried minced onions and grind until powdered. Mix in seasoned salt and black pepper.

Trim the roasts to remove any moldy of spoiled surface meat and all but 1/4-inch of the fat caps. Score the fat caps in a crosshatch pattern spacing cuts about 1-inch apart. Rub the roasts all over with the garlic paste. Coat the roasts with the rosemary-fennel mixture. Place on a rack in a large roasting pan fat cap-side up uncovered in the refrigerator over night, up to one day. Let roasts sit a room temperature for at least 2 hours before roasting.

To cook the roasts: Preheat oven to 225F and place a rack on the lower third of the oven. Place the roasts on a rack in shallow roasting pan or on a rimmed baking sheet. Toss onion, carrots, garlic cloves, and celery in oil and season with salt and pepper. Scatter the vegetables around the base of the roasts along with the thyme sprigs. Roast the meat, rotating the pan once until an instant read thermometer reads 125F. Remove from the oven and tent with foil and let rest for 30 minutes. To finish: Move a rack to the top third of the oven and increase the temperature to 500F. Roast until deep brown and exterior is crisp, 8-10 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes before serving.

To serve: Drizzle slices of beef with generous amounts of the Blackberry-Cabernet Reduction.

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Crown Pork Roast with Mushroom – Broccoli Stuffing

Crown Pork Roast is an elegant, classic preparation. Most grocery stores with in-house butchers will prepare the crown-shaped rack of pork chops. Even better, if you have a meat market like Ream’s Elburn Market nearby, order your crown pork roast from them and get the highest quality of pork.

Preparing the roast is very simple. It mainly just takes time and a good instant-read thermometer, like the Thermapen, to make sure the meat reaches 150F and doesn’t go too far past that mark.

At the bottom of this post is a recipe for Cider Gravy, which is new for Ample Bites thanks to friend and fellow foodie George Manos. This gravy is outstanding and a perfect compliment for the pork or chicken. Give it a try even if you don’t make a crown pork roast this holiday season


Crown Pork Roast with Mushroom – Broccoli Stuffing
(Mark Kelly, 2013)

Serves 15 to 20

1 crown pork roast (15 ribs)
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp dried parsley flakes
1 tsp dried thyme leaves, divided
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Extra-virgin olive oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
12 ounces button mushrooms, coarsely chopped
1 head of broccoli, cut into ½-inch pieces
6 cups firm unseasoned bread cubes
12 ounces low-sodium, fat-free chicken stock
1 cup dry white wine

Preheat oven to 325F.

In a small bowl mix the flour with dried parsley, ½ teaspoon thyme and ½ teaspoon pepper. Rub the inside and outside of the roast with salt, then coat the outside with flour mixture. Place the roast rib ends down in a large roasting pan for 2 hours.

Meanwhile, prepare stuffing in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Add 3 tablespoons of oil to the skillet. Cook the garlic for 30 seconds. Add the onion and cook until tender and beginning to brown, about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add mushrooms, broccoli, ½ teaspoon thyme and salt and pepper, to taste. Cook until the mushrooms are tender and beginning to brown and the broccoli is tender but still crisp. Stir in the bread cubes and chicken stock. Toss until mixed well.

When pork has roasted 2 hours remove it from the oven and turn the rib ends up. Fill the cavity with stuffing. Bake any leftover stuffing in a covered casserole during the last 40 minutes of cooking and standing time. Pour wine into the roasting pan to keep the drippings moist.

Return roast to oven and continue roasting about 1 ½ hours or until an instant meat thermometer between 2 ribs into the thickest part of the meat reads 150F. If the stuffing is browning too quickly cover it with a piece of foil

Let the roast stand for at least 15 minutes before carving.

Cider Gravy
(Recipe courtesy of George Manos and, 2013)

1 cup apple cider
4 tsp cornstarch
2 Tbsp applejack brandy
1 1/2 cup low-sodium beef broth

Add 1 cup broth to roasting pan and scrape up browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Pour juices into 2-cup measuring cup, freeze for 15 minutes. Spoon fat off top of pan juices. Transfer pan juices to medium sauce pan. Add remaining 1/2 cup beef broth and apple cider. Bring to a boil. Dissolve cornstarch into applejack in small bowl; whisk into broth mixture. Boil until gravy thickens slightly, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer gravy to a warm gravy boat to serve.

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Brined and Roasted Fresh Turkey

Ample Bites has no new recipe for tonight so I am posting my Brined and Roasted Fresh Turkey recipe for a Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner. And, sorry, no picture, but I am quite sure you have seen a roasted turkey before.

Brined and Roasted Fresh Turkey
(Mark Kelly, 2012)

Serves 8 – 10

1 12 – 14 pound fresh turkey

For Brine
2 quarts of cold apple juice
1 cup Kosher salt
2 Tbsp dried sage
2 Tbsp dried thyme
2 Tbsp dried rosemary
2 Tbsp freshly ground black pepper

For Roasting
1 ½ Tbsp freshly ground black pepper
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
1 Tbsp finely grated lemon zest
1 Tbsp minced fresh rosemary
1 Tbsp minced fresh sage leaves
1 Tbsp minced fresh thyme leaves
1 medium onion, quartered
1 orange, quartered
1 lemon, quartered

Thaw turkey, if frozen, and remove neck and giblets. Mix brine by pouring salt and spices into the apple juice until salt is completely dissolved. Place turkey in plastic brining bag and pour brine in. Pull the bag tight and tie it closed. Place the turkey in a cooler with a bag or two of ice for 24 hours.

Remove the turkey from the brine after 24 hours and rinse it with cold water. Pat the turkey dry, inside and out, and leave uncovered at room temperature for about one hour before seasoning.

Preheat oven to 450F.

Rub the turkey inside and out with black pepper. Place the turkey in a rack in a roasting pan. Mix butter, lemon zest, rosemary, sage and thyme in a small bowl. Rub herb butter over the top of the turkey and inside cavity.

Place onion, orange, and lemon inside turkey cavity. Foil the tips of the wings to keep them from burning. Pour 4 cups water into pan. Roast turkey, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325F. Baste turkey with pan juices; add more water, if needed, to maintain at least ¼-inch of liquid in the bottom of the roasting pan. Continue roasting turkey, basting every 30 minutes and tenting with foil if skin is turning too dark, until instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of the thigh without touching bone registers 165F (juices should run clear when thermometer is removed), about 2 ¾ hours total.

Transfer turkey to a platter. Tent with foil and let rest for 1 hour before carving.

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Roasted Pepper and Onion Salad with Blue Cheese

Roasted Pepper and Onion Salad with Blue Cheese is a nice salad to serve with winter meals, especially as a side for Thanksgiving or Christmas. The juices created during the roasting of the vegetables becomes a warm, unique dressing for the salad. The salad can be served without the blue cheese but Ample Bites recommends including the sharp but velvety texture of the blue cheese because of how it compliments the vegetables and the acidity of the sherry vinegar.

Roasted Pepper and Onion Salad with Blue Cheese
(Adapted from Bon Appetit, October 2012)

Serves 4 – 6

2 medium red onions, quartered through stem end
4 roasted red peppers, quartered lengthwise
6 garlic cloves, crushed
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbsp sherry vinegar
8 cups (loosely packed) frisee
1/3 cup thinly sliced blue cheese

Preheat oven to 450F. Combine first four ingredients in a shallow 2-quart baking dish; toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper.

Roast vegetables, stirring occasionally, until onions are caramelized and softened, about 40 minutes. Stir in vinegar. Season to taste with salt, pepper and more vinegar, if desired.

Arrange frisee on plates, divided evenly. Spoon vegetables over frisee. Drizzle juices in baking dish over top. Top with blue cheese.

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