These tips will help you select a premium cut of beef, but when in doubt, consult with your butcher or meat department staff—they’ll be sure to send you off with the cut they would choose for their own family.
GRADE: Choose choice- or select-grade rib roast.
APPEARANCE: Select bright red rib roast surrounded by a layer of milky white fat. Avoid roasts that look dull or have yellowish-colored fat. Look for even fat distribution and at least ½-inch thickness of fat on the topside of the roast. Standing rib roast should never look lean.
SIZE: For best results, go bigger rather than smaller. Small roasts overcook quickly, while large ones allow more room for error. Even for a small family, make sure that the roast you buy has at least four ribs attached. When planning for a larger group, allow 8 ounces of uncooked beef per guest.
TIP: Rib roasts are more flavorful when cooked on the bone. Ask your butcher to bone your roast; then tie the bones back on for you. This method will result in a full-flavored roast, and all it takes to remove the rib bones is a snip of the scissors.
GRADE: Choose choice- or select-grade beef tenderloin. For best results, marinate “select” cuts before roasting.
APPEARANCE: Select bright red tenderloin with little surrounding fat. Beef tenderloin is one of the leanest cuts, so fat marbling will be minimal.
SIZE: The best ready-to-roast beef tenderloin is a center-cut beef tenderloin. This center section of the tenderloin is evenly thick, requires no additional butchery, and will cook quickly and evenly. Plan on ¼ pound of uncooked tenderloin per guest.
Looking for a perfect recipe for company-special beef tenderloin? Try this one!