Many dads would love a big hunk of beef for a Father’s Day dinner, and delicious sides make it all the more awesome. Impress the fathers in your family with these recipes. Of course, they’re great for any day of the year for any reason, but Zach’s stepdad Mike and the rest of the family loved this dinner tonight. Mike likes simple seasoning, so Zach prepared a recipe with him in mind that turned out “perfectly cooked” (said Mike, a picky steak lover).
• For the rib roast:
one 7-lb. rib roast with 3 bones, and one 4.25-lb. rib roast with 2 bones (we wanted one big piece with 5 bones, but our butcher didn’t have any like that so we compromised)
1/2 cup of kosher salt
1/8 cup of black pepper
Preheat oven to 500 degrees F. Place the rib roasts fat-side up on a rack in a roasting pan, or improvise if the rib roasts are too big. The main thing is not to sit the meat directly on the bottom of the pan. Rub just a little of the salt and pepper lightly over the surface of the meat except the fat on top. Pack the remaining salt and pepper on the fat to create a nice crust. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees F. The larger of the two rib roasts took 1 hour 35 minutes at 325 degrees F, and the smaller needed 1 hour 20 minutes. To test the meat for your desired doneness, insert a meat thermometer in the thickest part of the middle of the rib roast but far from any bones. Our meat read at 130 degrees F, which is on the low range of medium-rare.
Cover the rib roasts in foil and leave in the pan on a wooden cutting board for 30 minutes. It is important to let the meat rest for a while once it’s out of the oven, and in the process the meat temperature will increase 5 degrees F (so the temperature of our medium-rare beef went from 130 to 135). Resting allows the juices to spread evenly through the meat; if you cut it immediately, the juices will gush out and you will be left with dry meat.
Five bones means five huge steaks, but there is enough meat for up to 12 people. Not every slice has to have a bone.
• For the Yorkshire pudding:
1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups of whole milk
1 cup of pan drippings from the bottom of the rib roast pan
2 tsp. of kosher salt
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. It’s best if you have two 9” cast iron skillets, but we used what we had. Pour 1/2 cup of pan drippings in each skillet and heated in the oven for 8-10 minutes until the drippings start to smoke.
Straus Family Creamery is our favorite for milk and cream to use in recipes. Just look at the butter solids accumulated at the top of this bottle of whole milk. Shake it up, and it’s good to go.
Combine the eggs and milk, and whisk until frothy. Add the flour and salt, and continue whisking until well blended.
Pour the egg mixture into the heated skillets. Bake for 18-20 minutes.
• For the potatoes au gratin:
4 lbs. of peeled russet potatoes
4 cups of whole milk
2 cups of chicken broth
1 1/2 cups of diced yellow onion
8 oz. of shredded emmentaler cheese
8 oz. of shredded medium cheddar cheese
4 oz. of shredded monterey jack cheese
1/2 cup of butter
1/3 cup of all-purpose flour
1 tbs. of kosher salt
1 tsp. of ground white pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Wash, peel, and cut the potatoes in half lengthwise. This will make it easier to slice them in a food processor with the slicer attachment. Transfer to a pot filled with water to wash out some of the starch. Let sit for about 30 minutes.
Melt the butter in a large sauce pot over medium heat. Add the diced onions and cook for about 6 minutes until soft and tender. Add the flour, and cook the onion-butter-flour mixture for 4 minutes to make a roux. Around this time, go back to the soaking potatoes and strain them from the water. They will need a few minutes to sit and be drained from as much water as possible.
Add the chicken broth and milk. Stirring frequently and scraping down the sides and bottom of the pot, continue cooking and bring to a simmer. At this point the roux should reach nappe (when it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon). Mix the three cheeses together, and slowly stir in and melt all but 2 cups of cheese to the roux to make the cheese sauce; save the 2 cups to sprinkle on top.
When the sauce is thick and fully incorporated, spray the baking dishes with a non-stick spray and fill with the drained potatoes. Pour the cheese sauce over the potatoes so that it’s evenly distributed and coating the potatoes.
Sprinkle the remaining shredded cheese over the top.
Bake for 1 1/2 hours until the top is bubbly and dark gold, and the potatoes are fork-tender.
• For the green beans:
1 lb. of green beans
1 large red onion
4 strips of bacon
3 garlic cloves
Black pepper to taste
Wash the green beans, and snap off the tops. Break in half for bite-size lengths. Slice the red onion, dice the bacon in 1/4” pieces, and mince the garlic. Put the bacon in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Cook until a good amount of the fat is rendered out and the meat is just slightly starting to turn brown. Drain out the fat, and add the onion and garlic. Cook for an additional 5 minutes, then add the green beans and pepper. Cook with the lid on for 8 minutes, tossing at least once or twice a minute (tossing is better than stirring because stirring can break the green beans).
• For the grilled asparagus:
1 1/2 lbs. of washed asparagus with the hard bottoms of the stalks cut off
1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
1/8 cup of balsamic vinegar
4 minced garlic cloves
Mix the olive oil, vinegar and garlic in a bowl, then put in a large zipper storage bag with the asparagus. Let marinade for 1 hour. Turn on the outdoor grill at medium heat, and grill for 2 minutes on each side.