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Cooking Prime Rib question

SIMIHOUND Oct 10, 2010 01:55 PM

I am curious why a recipe for cooking prime rib calls for spreading rock salt in the bottom of the pan. This recipe comes from Lawry's, a noted restaurant. Remember this does not involved using salt as a cap on the roast, a common misunderstanding.
Here is the recipe,


  1. c
    CuriousCat Oct 10, 2010 03:33 PM

    Possibly to soak up the fat/drippings, so your oven doesn't smoke as much? Though you shouldn't get much smoking at 350 anyway. Curious indeed... The only other reason I can fathom is to soak up the moisture in the drippings, to provide an extra-dry environment so as to crisp up the fat cap as much as possible. Though this seems like it would be more of an issue for poultry skin than roast beef.

    1. monku Oct 10, 2010 03:40 PM

      This is a quick theory of mine.
      Maybe the rock salt absorbs moisture in the oven and gives the oven environment a "dryer" atmosphere promoting dry roasting.

      1 Reply
      1. re: monku
        SIMIHOUND Oct 10, 2010 09:27 PM

        Thanks to you both.

      2. monku Oct 10, 2010 09:58 PM

        Don't know whether using rock salt to encase a roast beef is a misunderstanding according to what I read here:

        Another bit of rock salt lore?
        Watching Food TV the other day at a David Burke's Primehouse in Chicago the walls of the meat locker are tiled with Himalayan rock salt and the reason is to control the bacteria so they can age their beef up to 79 days.

        2 Replies
        1. re: monku
          SIMIHOUND Oct 11, 2010 01:08 PM

          Ye' Mon!! I saw that show and boy oh boy was I ready for some beef. I have encased my PR with salt and had no problems. I will try it low and slow next time.

          1. re: SIMIHOUND
            monku Oct 11, 2010 01:13 PM

            What does Lawry's know.

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