Saturday, August 31, 2013

Bone-In Rib Eye Steak with Lone Star Rub

 I got an email from Jim Arnost this week. Jim and I go way back to Chuck Ruhr Advertising in the early 80's. Jim is a very successful ad guy who has made the transition from print and broadcast to the digital age. Like me, Jim is a hard core carnivore that likes his animal flesh just lightly cooked over a very hot grill. Jim was looking for a bone-in rib eye recipe with a spicy cowboy rub.

I much prefer dry rubs to marinades as a way of adding flavor to meat. Marinades barely penetrate the surface of the meat, so any flavor they impart is strictly on the surface. Dry rubs give you an intensely flavored, absolute work-of-art crust. The fire caramelizes and concentrates  the spices of the rub. According to Adam Perry Long, author of "Serious Barbecue", the blueprint for a great dry rub is: Color base + Salt + Sugar + Flavor + Heat.

If you live in the Twin Cities, my favorite place to buy a bone-in rib eye is Byerly's or Lunds. They carry dry-aged, bone-in rib eyes that are to die for. The dry-aging does an incredible job of intensifying the beef flavor. If you are cooking dry-aged steaks, I highly recommend cooking them to medium rare so you can experience the maximum amount of flavor that such a great cut of meat can offer.

The Lone Star Rub recipe is from Jamie Purviance, a great chef who has written many of the most popular cookbooks put out by Weber Grills. I added a small bit of sugar to make sure the rub meets Chef Long's blueprint. This recipe serves four. My favorite side dish for these steaks is Hashbrowns O'Brien.


For the Lone Star Rub
2 teaspoons salt
1-1/2 teaspoons pure chile powder
1-1/2 teaspoons granulated onion
3/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

For the Steaks
4 dry-aged, bone-in rib eyes, 12 to 16 ounces and 1-1/2 inches thick
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 limes, cut into wedges


  1. In a small bowl combine the rub ingredients.
  2. Allow the steaks to stand at room temperature for 20 to 30 minutes before grilling. Lightly brush or spray both sides of the steaks with the oil and then evenly coat with the rub, gently pressing the spices into the meat. 
  3. Prepare grill for direct cooking over high heat.
  4. For medium rare*: place steaks on grill, cover grill and cook for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, turn steaks over, cover grill and cook for 4 minutes more.
  5. Transfer steaks to a work surface and tent with foil. Let steaks rest for 5 minutes, then serve with lime wedges.
*If you like your steaks cooked to a different degree of doneness, use this guide:

Wine pairing: Cabernet Sauvignon or Syrah

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