Cooking With Local Chefs

Cooking with Chef Jim Copening of Arts & Eats in Bradenton | A prime holiday dinner

Chef Jim Copening's favorite holiday dish is prime rib of beef au jus with Yorkshire pudding, mashed potatoes and asparagus. 
Chef Jim Copening's favorite holiday dish is prime rib of beef au jus with Yorkshire pudding, mashed potatoes and asparagus. PHOTO PROVIDED

This time of year we're thinking about sharing gifts, love, and food with family and friends.

We spend a lot of time and energy decorating our homes and businesses, writing or emailing holiday cards, buying and wrapping gifts, assembling Christmas trees, lighting Hannukah candles, and most importantly for me-- cooking and thinking about special dishes for the holidays.

As a chef, cooking is how I share my love and gratitude for the wonderful life I've been given. Arts & Eats was just a dream a short four years ago when my wife, Donna, and I were living in the Greenwich Village section of New York City. And now, here we are, thriving in Bradenton's fabulous Village of the Arts as the No. 1 ranked Bradenton restaurant on Trip Advisor.

Growing our business and providing so many people with joy is something we're very proud of. We look forward to many more years of sharing love and food with our friends and guests.

This year especially, with the recent news of terrorist attacks, let's do all we can to promote peace, happiness, and joy. A dish that I love to cook for the holidays is prime rib of beef au jus with Yorkshire Pudding, mashed potatoes and asparagus. It's a hearty and delicious dish to serve any time of year, but is especially fitting for the holiday season. Yorkshire pudding is a traditional British side for rib roast.

Prime Rib of Beef au Jus with Horseradish Sauce

6-pound boneless prime rib of beef (Note: We buy ours at Gordon Food Service, 4605 14th St. W.)

6 sprigs thyme, chopped

4 tablespoons rosemary, chopped

3 cloves garlic, chopped

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 pinches each salt and ground pepper

Consommé or water for jus

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. n a medium bowl, mix salt, pepper and a mix of chopped thyme, rosemary, chopped garlic and olive oil. Rub this mixture on the roast, thoroughly covering the meat. Roast in the preheated oven at 450 degrees for 20 minutes until crisp on outside. Lower oven to 325 degrees and roast for 2 hours more. Turn off the oven and leave roast to stay warm until ready to serve. It it important to watch the time at each temperature. The roast should be medium rare in the center. For the jus, boil pan drippings, adding a little water or consommé to add volume. You can use a thickener like arrowroot to if desired. Serve the jus either over the meat or on the side. Cut the roast in 16-ounce portions. One nice way to serve is to dip each slice in jus before plating. Serves 6.

Horseradish Sauce

4 ounces sour cream,

4 tablespoons prepared horse radish

4 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

Ground pepper to taste

Mix and serve with the roast.

Yorkshire Pudding

1 tablespoons melted butter

1 cup all-purpose flour

1- 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

2 large eggs

1- 1/2 cups milk

Place all ingredients in a blender. Pour the batter into a popover or muffin tin at 400 degrees for 35 minutes. The tops of the popovers will puff up during the baking process. Use a toothpick to poke holes into the top. The puddings will collapse. The holes avoid them from collapsing too much. Store in a plastic bag. Heat before serving. These freeze well. Makes 6 puddings.

Mashed Potatoes

3 pounds Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks


Kosher salt, pinch

1/2 to 1 cup milk

4 ounces butter

Salt and ground pepper to taste

Place potatoes in a pot. Add just enough cold water to cover the potatoes. Add a generous pinch or two of salt. Bring to a simmer until fork tender -- 20 to 30 minutes. Drain in a colander and return to the pot. Mash the potatoes by hand with a large fork or a masher. Add enough milk for the desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper to taste. While hot, add cold butter and mix well. Serves 6.

Chef Jim Copening, of Arts & Eats, can be reached at The restaurant is at 1114 12th St. W., Bradenton, in the Village of the Arts. Information: 941-201-6647 or