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Let me start with my regret, I should have made this for Christmas,well next year it is on the menu.

I did a lot of research and paid real close attention to Smokin's Prime rib 101...Thanks!

I went to Scavuzzo's Price chopper, a local quality grocery store, and bought a 2 rib short end Certified Angus Beef prime rib,choice grade.

Last night I covered it with worcestershire sauce and rubbed with kosher salt and MSS. I then plastic wrapped for the night. I put it on the smokette 020 at 11 am today on 180* with 1 1/2 Ozs total of oak,cherry,pecan. It took 5 1/2 hrs to reach a temp of 125* internal and at that point I FTC for 75 minutes. I then put it in a preheated oven at 550* for 8 minutes.

While my prime rib was FTC I made up some Au Jus,thanks again Smokin', that consisted of a can of beef broth, can of french onion soup, 1/2 t of sugar,2TB of worecestershire sauce and 2 t of beef base. After a boil and some simmering I strained the onions out.

I gotta say AWESOME was the best way to describe the results. It was juice, med rare Prime Rib heaven. Mom says I can cook it again for her.

Thanks again Smokin', Pags, and Tigerfan. You guys made me look good and that's hard to do sometimes. LOL!
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I, too, did a prime rib for Christmas. It was a choice cut standing rib roast. Just a few points shy of prime. Like RibDog, it was the best I've smoked or eaten. I've got a few pictures with Smokin and will post them shortly.

Way to go on the prime rib Cal. You were hoping your mom would enjoy it, and it looks like you made it happen. That last searing sure does add a nice final touch. As you know, I, too, seared in a 500* oven, and like you also left it in for only 6 minutes. The recipe called for 10 minutes, but that would have burned the exterior a bit.

Cudos to Smokin for Prime Rib 101. It inspired and encouraged me to give it a go. The only thing I changed was the final searing technique since my smoker won't exceed 300*.
Last edited by pags
Hey Arnie!,

I was wondering the same thing myself when I read this recipe.

I did read Smokins' Prime rib 101 and he said something about pasteurization in his FAQ's. Sounded like Smokin' knew what he was talking about...LOL...besides I know rule number "10", so that was good enough for me.

I didn't let it come to room temp before putting into the smoker, something that most articles said to do, once again I followed Smokins' thoughts on this step not being necessary.

"Question: What about the danger zone that I have been reading about? Since the meat spends so much time between 40 - 140 deg. F and now I see that you only want to get the internal temp. to about 135 deg. F, isn't this dangerous?
Answer: There's nothing to worry about because the meat is thoroughly pasteurized.
Here's a quote: "Pasteurization: A process named after scientist Louis Pasteur by which every particle of milk is heated to not lower than 145° F for not less than 30 minutes and promptly cooled to destroy any harmful bacteria that may be present without affecting flavor and food value." Since the meat is in the oven for hours, no bacteria will survive, especially in the presence of smoke, which is one of the best known preservatives. Don't underestimate the importance of sanitation and proper food handling after the meat is cooked and before it is served though."

Last edited by Former Member
The way I understand it the baddies are not inside the meat but on external surface of the meat. During meat processing (cutting up the cow), bacteria from intestines or organs may come in contact with cut up hunks of beef. We have to cook the meat (pork butt, prime rib, roasts) so the external temperature of the meat gets to 140* or higher killing off surface bacteria. Our roasts and PB's get to an external temp equal to the smoker temp. Since hamburger is ground, the internal temp of burgers should be cooked to medium to be safe.

Think about it. We cook our steaks and prime rib to rare, where the internal temp may only reach 120*. Any baddies on the surface are burned off. The meat is good to go.
Last edited by pags
I like a good piece of beef to be rare to medium rare as much as the next guy, but I guess I’m having a problem understanding what I think I know about the 40 to 140 in under 4 hour rule.

As I understand the "intact muscle" rule it allows an intact muscle to be cooked to rare using low temp. Provided it has not been punctured. Unpunctured, intact muscle need only have the outside 0.5 inch pass through 140 degrees within 4 hours. Something easily done at temps of 200 F or more.

Now if you inject it or insert a probe, you have changed the "intact nature" of the meat and should treat it as ground meat. This means the inside temp of the meat must pass through 140 within four hours. Usually requiring a temp of at least 275 F or better.

I’m just questioning the 5 ½ hour cook at 180⁰ to get the meat to 125⁰. It just seems long to me. But what do I know Confused
Posted December 30, 2010 11:02 AM Hide Post
the "Danger Zone" (40°F - 140°F) is about the ambient room temp. With the smoker temp above 140°F there is not issue with how long the smoke takes.

I believe the USDA is referring to the internal temperature of the meat, not the temperature of it’s surroundings.

I’m unsure of the temperature needed for the pasteurization process, but I know it cannot be done at 180⁰. And I believe the process requires a rapid heat up followed by a rapid cool down.

I know there is a little leeway with whole muscle meat as apposed to ground meat, but I think 5 ½ hours at 180⁰ to reach an internal temperature of 125⁰ followed by a 75 minute FTC is quite a stretch.
Last edited by chef-boy-arnie
If you are quoting, this link. This is talking about the correct way to handle food before and after smoking. It is also quoting the art of cooking, that is not what we are doing here. We are smoking the meat, two totally different ways of preparing meat.

My Prime rib was in the "Danger Zone" for about 20 minutes before the smoker got above 140* and then again,maybe 45 minutes with holding wrapped in foil in a prewarmed cooler and maybe again for 10 minutes while we ate. That doesn't add up to 4 hrs, that you are quoting on the Food Danger Zone.

I think, anyway it was heavenly for a few minutes.LOL
Done Versus Safe: What You Need to Know
Webster’s Dictionary defines “doneness” as the condition of being cooked to the desired degree. This includes subjective qualities, like a food’s appearance, texture, and optimum flavor. The USDA defines Safe (for whole muscle beef) as being cooked to 145⁰

That being said, I am not opposed to eating a well prepared rare or medium rare piece of meat.

I have a great deal of respect for you as well as other posters to this thread and have benefitted well from some of the knowledge you’ve shared on this site. However, because of what I have read and/or been taught I must respectfully disagree with several things said in this thread.

By no stretch of the imagination do I believe I am an expert, but as I understand the Whole Intact Muscle rule, you don't want the probe to violate the muscle group unless you treat it as a violated meat. By delaying the insertion of the probe until the outside of the meat has been sterilized you can safely under cook the rest of the muscle group and show compliance. As I understand USDA guidelines sterilization is accomplished when the outer ½ inch of the muscle group has reach 145⁰ which can be easily done by smoke cooking at 200⁰. This is considered sterilization and not pasteurization.

The 4 hour rule is in the 2009 food code
(B) If time temperature control is used as the public health control up to a maximum of 4 hours:

Again this is to say the no food shall have a cumulative temperature abuse of more than 4 hours. It is also qualified with potentially hazardous foods, raw meat being potentially hazardous.

We are of course treating the smoker hobbyist as a professional chef using the pro guidelines to establish what would happen in a commercial kitchen.

This is done assuming the smoker hobbyist is striving for the pro level results and thus needs released from the shackles of the home cook rules. This is the reason to use the Food Code for the smoker hobbyist on the site. Their (Serious hobbyist smoker) level of knowledge and skill is well above the "home cook or consumer cook" and as such they need information on how to properly interpret those guidelines so they can push their skills into the pro arena. There is a whole body of work that is also suppose to be used in conjunction with the Food Code, Haccp, Whole Intact Muscle, etc etc and numerous papers and position clarifications that come out from FSIS. Several qualified food safety professionals are on this site to share their information on how the commercial kitchen does the advanced techniques safely. This helps the smoker hobbyist continue to push the envelope safely.

If home smoker is not in this mind set it would be best to use the consumer/home cook rules. These rules are much more restrictive to keep the uninformed from killing their family and/or friends. These rules limit people to two hours maximum and one hour when the ambient temperature is above 90 F. That book can be downloaded at the link below. A lot of people on this site are really pushing into the commercial realm and need the information offered from the commercial world, much of which won't be black and white or a written yes or no, it is left that way on purpose so we can do what we do safely. For the "show it to me in black and white crowd the Consumer Kitchen Companion was developed to keep people safe.
Last edited by chef-boy-arnie
First off I do not serve rare beef to anyone. If I prepare a rare piece of beef for myself I do not do it without knowing for sure what the quality and handling of the beef has been. And I do so with the full knowledge this is not considered a safe practice and of what the implied consequences are.
It is my understanding that smoke cooking done by USDA requirements has to be done at above 250*, but then again I think what I'm doing is "hot smoking". That is a totally different type of cooking.

But no matter how I cook it, it will "never" be above 145* in the center, so it will never be USDA safe, correct!

I can live with this thought, as long as I'm the one preparing and smoking the prime rib and it is coming from USDA approved meat.
If the muscle hasn't been violated, the internal temp doesn't have to be at 145*. Just the external. This is accomplished every time we cook. As a matter of fact, when we take the internal to 125*, the external well exceeds 145* approaching the cooker's temp.

As an aside, I've often wondered if the use of pigtails to turn meat doesn't create a potential problem for us if we insert the pigtails into the meat before the external temp of the meat gets to 145*. I.E. grabbing a steak with the pigtail and throwing it onto the grill or flipping the steak before the second side is seared. Doesn't this potentially drive bacteria into the meat where the temp won't hit 145* for those of us that like rare to medium rare?
Last edited by pags
Originally posted by MaxQue:
You guys need to consider Tequila. A couple of Margaritas, now and again will compensate for any of those nasty germs Smiler

LOL, I agree, or mebbe a martini while you cook then vino with the meal! I cook my rib roast to ~ 115* internal and remove, it will coast to 125* or higher. MMM, VERY rare beef and a humongous glass of red grape juice (Syrah or Cabernet!!). As I add to the thread jack......

Okay, first off, everyone threadjacked when this thread about a successful cook and went down a new thread.

EVERYONE, when you change the original thread and go a new direction, please post a new thread.


Because you're information will get lost and it doesn't do a service to the original . I guarantee 100% that no one will see a food safety discussion buried in another thread that has a title like this one.

NOTHING WRONG with the subject of food safety, just start a new thread.

Cal. Sorry you're SO GOOD thread went this direction. I saw it before but didn't moderate it then, I should have.

If I could move this to a new thread, I would, but I can't.

SOOOOOOOOOO I've closed it. Want to talk FS? Start a new thread.

Chef, obviously with that background you can quote food safety because of your background so appreciate the info. I don't think we adequately accounted in the discussions for the sear at the end.

Me? I'm just a bbq guy. I've taken the Safe Serve courses and know all about the USDA. We can quote USDA/FSIS until the cows come home (to be eaten) but I think we also are working a lot of different methods and technique the USDA/FSIS don't really cover well. Smoking, cooking with smoke, etc.

Me, I think we're splitting hair if we're talking 4 hours to 5 1/2 hours. No FSIS won't come off their standards, but I know for a fact, that we all survived a lot of food eating long before the internet and the over quoting off the USGOV. I do try to quote authoritative sources so people can make their own choice. Not sure if the quote above was from me, it wasn't referenced, but I stand by PR 101.

I've cooked for 1,000's with this PR recipe and I know this recipe has been cooked by many and haven't had ONE question about this in the 10 + years.

For me, it's a non-issue if you use common sense, quality meat and good food safety techniques. None of our homes would pass a restaurant Health Dept inspection, but we don't have too.

Fo you, if it's an issue, go with different temps or if you're worried about a 4 hour window, adjust the recipe.

Cold Smoking has also been around a long time, and we've all survived that food too.

Lots of methods, so just educate yourself and feel free to adjust to your personal needs.

Last edited by Former Member
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