We raised our Champagne glasses and grilling tongs this week as we signed off on the very last pages of our new cookbook, Sunset’s Great Outdoors Cookbook, which will be in stores at the end of April. It’s loaded with exciting, adventurous recipes that we think you’re going to want to make again and again. One of our favorites is this holiday recipe created by Sunset reader Bob House. He showed us how to grill prime rib with a garlicky herb rub and cook Yorkshire pudding right in the sizzling pan drippings. It’s every bit as amazing as it looks. Here’s to you, Bob!
Grilled Beef Rib Roast and Yorkshire Pudding
SERVES 5 TO 7 | 1 1⁄2 HOURS
Sunset reader Bob House, of Scottsdale, Arizona, received an award in a Sunset grilling contest for this unusual recipe. House grills the herb-seasoned roast, catching the drippings. Then he pours Yorkshire pudding batter into the drip pan, where it puffs in the hot fat and browns. If you’re cooking over charcoal, be sure to set up the grill in a sheltered location—wind will burn the coals too quickly.
1 tied center-cut bone-in beef rib roast (4 to 5 lbs.), surface fat trimmed to no more than 1⁄4 in. thick
Garlic-Herb Oil (recipe follows)
1 cup each low-fat milk and flour
3 large eggs
3⁄4 tsp. salt
Melted butter (if necessary)
1 large bunch watercress, tough stems trimmed
1. Pat beef dry and coat all over with garlic-herb oil. Let stand at room temperature about 45 minutes.
2. Heat a grill to medium (375° to 450°) indirect heat with a charcoal area left clear or a gas burner turned off to make an indirect heat area. For charcoal, ignite 80 briquets; see How to Maintain the Heat for a Charcoal Fire below). Set an 8-in. square drip pan filled with 1 cup water between banks of coals or on turned-off gas burner. Set roast, bones down, on cooking grate over pan. Cook, covered, until meat starts to brown, about 45 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, in a blender, mix milk, flour, eggs, and salt until batter is smooth.
4. Transfer roast to a platter. Protecting your hands, lift off cooking grate and remove drip pan. Pour drippings through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl. For charcoal, spoon 1 tbsp. fat from drippings and return to pan; discard the rest. Return pan to firegrate and pour in batter. Move briquets so they’re not touching pan. Replace cooking grate, set roast back over pan, and close lid on grill (keeping vents open). Cook roast, tenting with foil if it starts to get dark, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into center of thickest part registers 135° for medium-rare, 30 to 60 minutes, or until done to your liking. Cook pudding until well browned, 40 to 60 minutes, rotating it after 30 minutes. If using a gas grill, spoon 3 tbsp. fat from drippings (adding melted butter, if needed, to make enough) into pan and pour in batter. Set another drip pan on firegrate, replace cooking grate, and set roast over pan. Set pudding next to roast and close lid on grill. Cook pudding until well browned, 20 to 30 minutes. Cook roast, tenting with foil if it starts to get dark, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into center of thickest part registers 135° for medium-rare, 30 to 50 minutes, or until done to your liking.
5. Transfer roast to a board; let roast rest in a warm place for juices to settle, at least 10 minutes. If pudding is done before roast is ready to carve, close charcoal grill vents and leave pudding on grill to keep warm, or turn off gas grill and keep pudding warm with lid down.
6. Carve roast. Set watercress on plates and serve beef on top of watercress, with scoops of pudding alongside.
In a food processor, finely chop 1⁄4 cup garlic cloves with 3 tbsp. olive oil and 1 1⁄2 tsp. each dried rosemary, kosher salt, dried savory, dried thyme, and pepper.
How to Maintain the Heat for a Charcoal Fire
Once you’ve ignited the briquets in a chimney on the firegrate, here’s how to keep the fire going.
Bank it. When coals are thoroughly ignited, after 15 to 20 minutes, bank them on opposite sides of the firegrate (bottom grate). Set a drip pan in the empty area, and set the cooking grate in place to preheat. Let the coals burn to the heat specified in your recipe, usually 5 to 10 minutes for high, longer for medium to low.
Add food. The area over the section cleared of coals is the indirect-heat area; set food on the cooking grate above cleared section. Cover the grill, being sure all vents are open.
Maintain the heat. If you’re cooking longer than 30 minutes, add 5 to 6 briquets to each mound of coals every 30 minutes, and leave the fire uncovered for a few minutes to help them light. At the same time, sweep ash from the firegrate by moving the outside lever; this keeps vents clear and air flowing.
Adjust the vents. If needed, reduce the fire’s temperature by partially closing vents in the lid and on the underside of the grill.