A bone-in pork rib roast is a simple way to create a special occasion dish for the holidays. Made with a rosemary herb rub and paired with a cranberry orange jam, this rib roast will delight any special family member or guest. Baking it low and slow will lock in all of the moisture, creating the perfect main dish!
3 - 3 ½lbpork rib roastbones Frenched or left with meat intact on the bones
2tspminced fresh rosemary
1tsplight brown sugar
2 ½tspkosher salt
For the orange cranberry sauce
In a small bowl, combine the rosemary, garlic, black pepper, brown sugar, and salt, and set it aside.
Depending on preference, either French and clean the bones of the rib roast (ask your butcher to do so) or leave the meat on the bones. On the fat cap side of the roast, use a sharp knife to puncture holes approximately 1-inch deep. Rub the salt mixture over the meat and push some into each puncture hole using all of the mixture. Set the meat in the refrigerator to marinate for 1-2 hours.
Preheat the oven to 250°F.
When the meat is ready, place the roast on a rack fitted into a roasting pan with the fat side facing up. Bake in the preheated oven and roast until the internal temperature reaches 140°F, about 2-3 hours. When the meat registers 140°F, remove it from the oven.
Preheat the oven to 500°F. Once the oven is heated, return the roast to the oven. Roast the meat until the fat is crisped and the meat is browned, 12-15 minutes. Once the roast is finished, remove it from the oven and allow it to rest for 15 minutes before slicing.
While the meat is roasting, prepare the sauce. In a small saucepan, combine the orange marmalade, cranberries, Dijon mustard, cloves, orange zest, orange juice, and rosemary. Bring to a low simmer over medium heat. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries burst and the sauce is thickened, 8-12 minutes.
When purchasing a pork rib roast, look for a center cut. This will ensure that the roast has an even thickness, allowing for even baking. Also, ask the butcher to French the roast so that the rib bones are exposed, which makes for a better presentation and an easier eating experience.
While it may seem like an extra step, using a knife to puncture holes in the fat cap of the rib roast and stuffing with some of the dry rub mixture will deepen the flavor. Salt and sugar will both permeate into meat, but rosemary does not. Rather than simply sticking to the exterior of the meat, placing the dry rub under the surface will allow it to create an even deeper flavor.
Using butcher’s twine to cinch together the rib roast before placing it in the oven will ensure that the roast bakes more evenly. Simply place a piece of butcher’s twine between each rib and make a knot. If preparing this roast alone, loop the twine through not once but twice. Then tighten. This will create a temporary knot without needing any additional assistance. Then tie a knot to secure the twine, cutting off any excess.