Horseradish-and-Herb-Crusted Beef Rib Roast

The inspiration for this delicious roast comes from chef John Besh's father-in-law, Pat Berrigan, who serves it every Christmas with horseradish sauce on the side. Besh opts to smear the roast with a horseradish, garlic and herb butter, which bakes to form an irresistible crust.

Slideshow:More Centerpiece Roasts

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  • Servings: 12

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  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 head of garlic, cloves coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup prepared horseradish
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons chopped thyme
  • 3 tablespoons chopped rosemary
  • 3 tablespoons chopped sage
  • One 16-pound rib roast of beef
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper

How to make this recipe

  1. Preheat the oven to 325°. In a food processor, combine the butter with the garlic, horseradish, thyme, rosemary and sage and process to a paste.

  2. Stand the roast in a very large roasting pan. Season generously all over with salt and pepper and set it fatty side up. Spread the horseradish-herb butter all over the top. Bake for about 3 1/2 hours, until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center registers 125° for medium rare. Transfer the roast to a carving board to rest for at least 20 minutes or for up to 1 hour before serving.

Make Ahead

The horseradish-herb butter can be refrigerated overnight. Let the butter soften before using.


If making Pat's Popovers, reserve 3 tablespoons of the beef fat from the roasting pan.

Suggested Pairing

This impressive rib roast will pair well with a substantial Cabernet Sauvignon; Cabernet's firm tannins help cut the richness of red meat, and its slight herbal edge makes a nice partner to the herb-horseradish crust.

Contributed By Photo © Quentin Bacon Published December 2007

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