Cooking a Prime Rib Roast this Holiday Season? Don’t Sear and get Gray Meat! Reverse Sear……
Browning the exterior generates deep rich flavors from a chemical reaction called the Maillard reaction and caramelization of sugars. Darken it too much and you can carbonize it and burn off all the rub.
start low and slow with the lid closed away from the flame with indirect convection heat. This will allow the interior of this thick piece of meat to heat slowly and evenly. It takes time for heat to move from the air into the outer layer of the meat and then from the outer layer down to the center. No matter how much heat you apply to the outside of a roast, it takes time for it to move to the center.
If you start off with high heat, you build up heat in the outer layer. It is like a capacitor storing energy. Searing first is a recipe for an outer layer of gray meat. If you cook the whole roast low and slow, and sear at the end it takes much less heat to brown the outside since the outside is already hot, and when you sear at the end the heat doesn’t penetrate nearly as much. You end up with less overcooked meat. Indoors, you just put the meat under the broiler at the end of the cook.