As I mentioned in last week’s recipe for Skillet-Roasted Winter Vegetables, I recently had quite an adventure photographing a couple dishes in the middle of a Florida storm. This week’s recipe for Center-Cut Pork Rib Roast is the last dish I photographed during that session, and I was lucky enough to get a pretty good shot of the meal. In hindsight, a tripod would have helped stabilize the photo above, but I’m so used to shooting by hand that I didn’t think of it in time.
Today’s cooking method will work for most bone-in cuts of meat; try it with beef prime rib or roast. The key is to cook the meat at a low temperature (250F) so that the center reaches an ideal temperature without overcooking the outer layers, then to finish it off in a searing-hot oven after a brief period of rest. The timing works out perfectly, as you can rest the roast while you crank up the oven heat – I’m a big fan of this type of efficiency.
Another reason I like this roast is that it is the counterpoint to my popular Eye of Round Roast recipe (which celebrated its five-year birthday earlier this month). The older recipe starts at a high heat, then finishes the roast at a very low heat; while both methods consistently result in tender roasts, I also like the sense of control that comes with searing the roast at the end, as in today’s recipe.
Like in some previous recipes, I used pork from my friends at Butcher Box, who deliver curated boxes of high-quality meats to your doorstep, complete with recipe cards for the meats they provide (including recipes from yours truly). I like that they often include lesser-known cuts like this center-cut rib roast (which is essentially a super thick pork chop), which gives folks the opportunity to try out new, unexpected tastes.
Center-Cut Pork Rib Roast (Gluten-free, Perfect Health Diet, Paleo, Primal, Whole30)
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp dried thyme
1 pinch coconut palm sugar (optional, omit for Whole30)
2-4 lb pork rib roast
chives to garnish
1. Combine the paprika, salt, pepper, thyme, and palm sugar into a rub. Rub the mixture all over the rib roast, then set out at room temperature for 30 minutes. Preheat your oven to 250F.
2. Place the roast on a baking sheet lined with a wire rack, and insert a remote thermometer if you’re using one. Place the roast in the center of the oven and roast until it reaches and internal temperature of 140F, about 1 to 2 hours depending on the size of your roast.
3. Remove the roast from the oven and increase the oven temperature to 500F. Loosely tent the roast using tin foil as the oven comes to temperature. Return the roast to the 500F oven and roast until crispy, about 5 minutes.
4. Rest the roast for 5 minutes before slicing and serving.