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Beef prime rib roast (3 to 4 ribs or boneless), about 5 lb.
Salt and lemon pepper to taste
1 or 2 cloves of garlic (optional)
1 c. red wine, stock or water

Bring the meat to room temperature by removing it from the refrigerator at least an hour before cooking, preferably two. Preheat oven to 450°F. Place meat, bone side down, in a large roasting pan. Season with salt and pepper. If you like garlic, peel cloves and cut into tiny slivers. Use a small, sharp knife to poke small holes in the meat and insert garlic. Place roast in oven and cook 15 minutes undisturbed. Turn heat down to 350°F and roast 1 hour. Check in several places with an instant-read meat thermometer. When no spot checks in at under 125°F, the meat is rare. Cook for another 5 or 10 minutes if you like it more done, then check again, but in no case let the temperature go above 155°F.

Remove meat from oven. Pour off all but a few tablespoons of the fat and place the roasting pan over a burner set to high. Add liquid and cook, stirring and scraping up any brown bits, until it is reduced by half. Slice roast and serve, splashing a little of the sauce on the platter and passing the rest at the table. Serve with a small bowl of horseradish sauce to pass.

Makes about 6 servings.

Note for a larger crowd: With roasts of 5 ribs or more, make sure to allow plenty of time to let the meat reach room temperature. Use more garlic if you like and increase the initial browning time to 20 minutes. Increase sauce liquid to 2 cups. Cooking time will be only marginally longer.

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