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Dry Aging Beef at Home

Dry Aging Beef at Home
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  • Post #31 - February 8th, 2010, 11:01 am
    Post #31 - February 8th, 2010, 11:01 am Post #31 - February 8th, 2010, 11:01 am
    Jeff:

    The steak had lost about 15% of its original weight at that point. I wanted to stop the drying process.
  • Post #32 - February 8th, 2010, 11:40 am
    Post #32 - February 8th, 2010, 11:40 am Post #32 - February 8th, 2010, 11:40 am
    Will: Did you change the cheesecloth at all during the age?

    My wife is a bit squeemish about the dry age mineral smell eminating from our fridge. Will it affect the age if I put an individual steak in a larger gallon size bag?
  • Post #33 - February 8th, 2010, 11:51 am
    Post #33 - February 8th, 2010, 11:51 am Post #33 - February 8th, 2010, 11:51 am
    Yeah, it's not dry aging if it's sealed up with its moisture in a bag. It's just aging. The point is that your refrigerator is sucking humidity out of it, concentrating the flavors. That stops if you seal it inside plastic.
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  • Post #34 - February 8th, 2010, 3:02 pm
    Post #34 - February 8th, 2010, 3:02 pm Post #34 - February 8th, 2010, 3:02 pm
    I changed the cheesecloth three times during the course of the week. As Mike notes when you bag the steak, it puts it in a stabilized humidity environment which, in my case, seemed to stop the aging of the steak completely.
  • Post #35 - February 9th, 2010, 12:29 am
    Post #35 - February 9th, 2010, 12:29 am Post #35 - February 9th, 2010, 12:29 am
    Ruined the beef. What did I do wrong?
    I bought an entire ny strip loin from Sam's at about 15 pounds in the cryopak. I unpacked, rinsed it good, dried it off, and put it in the fridge in the garage. I had a temp/humidity gauge in the fridge. Temp was dead on 34 degrees. Humidity about 58%. Beef was elevated and on a drying rack with at least 6 inches of clearance underneath and 2 feet above it. I patted it dry 2x daily for first 5 days, and only once daily after that. Meat definitely was drying out by day 7. By day 14, it was dark and ugly on the outside, an odor had developed that was definitely strong, but not totally offensive. I decided it was time to cut it up. It was dry on the outside, but not hard like I expected. I began trimming, expecting to seem some nice bright red meat after the outside was trimmed. I didn't see that. The whole thing was fairly rotten. It smelled bad, and was a nasty purply/grey on the inside even in the middle of the entire loin. It's now in a trash bag in the garage. I'm guessing I need more air-flow, maybe a small electric fan inside the fridge? I remember that the cryovac said to use or freeze by feb 3. I didn't cut it till the 8th, but don't think that's the problem because you should be able to dry age for close to a month. Anybody have any advice?
  • Post #36 - February 9th, 2010, 2:28 am
    Post #36 - February 9th, 2010, 2:28 am Post #36 - February 9th, 2010, 2:28 am
    ruinedbeef wrote:Ruined the beef. What did I do wrong?
    I bought an entire ny strip loin from Sam's at about 15 pounds in the cryopak. I unpacked, rinsed it good, dried it off, and put it in the fridge in the garage. I had a temp/humidity gauge in the fridge. Temp was dead on 34 degrees. Humidity about 58%. Beef was elevated and on a drying rack with at least 6 inches of clearance underneath and 2 feet above it. I patted it dry 2x daily for first 5 days, and only once daily after that. Meat definitely was drying out by day 7. By day 14, it was dark and ugly on the outside, an odor had developed that was definitely strong, but not totally offensive. I decided it was time to cut it up. It was dry on the outside, but not hard like I expected. I began trimming, expecting to seem some nice bright red meat after the outside was trimmed. I didn't see that. The whole thing was fairly rotten. It smelled bad, and was a nasty purply/grey on the inside even in the middle of the entire loin. It's now in a trash bag in the garage. I'm guessing I need more air-flow, maybe a small electric fan inside the fridge? I remember that the cryovac said to use or freeze by feb 3. I didn't cut it till the 8th, but don't think that's the problem because you should be able to dry age for close to a month. Anybody have any advice?


    Was it Prime or Choice from Sam's? Seems like one issue could be the amount of fat surrounding the strip loin. And did you wrap it in cheesecloth or some sort of cloth?

    This has been an interesting thread and I'd like to try this, but your post makes clear that success isn't guaranteed, which is quite costly with such a large cut of meat.
  • Post #37 - February 9th, 2010, 7:48 am
    Post #37 - February 9th, 2010, 7:48 am Post #37 - February 9th, 2010, 7:48 am
    ruinedbeef wrote:Ruined the beef. What did I do wrong?
    I bought an entire ny strip loin from Sam's at about 15 pounds in the cryopak. I unpacked, rinsed it good, dried it off, and put it in the fridge in the garage. I had a temp/humidity gauge in the fridge. Temp was dead on 34 degrees. Humidity about 58%. Beef was elevated and on a drying rack with at least 6 inches of clearance underneath and 2 feet above it. I patted it dry 2x daily for first 5 days, and only once daily after that. Meat definitely was drying out by day 7. By day 14, it was dark and ugly on the outside, an odor had developed that was definitely strong, but not totally offensive. I decided it was time to cut it up. It was dry on the outside, but not hard like I expected. I began trimming, expecting to seem some nice bright red meat after the outside was trimmed. I didn't see that. The whole thing was fairly rotten. It smelled bad, and was a nasty purply/grey on the inside even in the middle of the entire loin. It's now in a trash bag in the garage. I'm guessing I need more air-flow, maybe a small electric fan inside the fridge? I remember that the cryovac said to use or freeze by feb 3. I didn't cut it till the 8th, but don't think that's the problem because you should be able to dry age for close to a month. Anybody have any advice?



    sounds like what I posted on page one
    mhill95149 wrote:One new concern from the guy in TX who started that thread is that his Costco meat source is now using a tenderizer (needle punch) on the primal cuts so dry aging is
    not recommended.
    This does not seem to be the case for the IL Costcos that I've shop.
  • Post #38 - February 11th, 2010, 2:56 pm
    Post #38 - February 11th, 2010, 2:56 pm Post #38 - February 11th, 2010, 2:56 pm
    ruinedbeef wrote:Ruined the beef. What did I do wrong?
    I bought an entire ny strip loin from Sam's at about 15 pounds in the cryopak. I unpacked, rinsed it good, dried it off, and put it in the fridge in the garage....

    I patted it dry 2x daily for first 5 days, and only once daily after that.

    ...an odor had developed that was definitely strong, but not totally offensive.


    Hi,

    I agree with the above concerns with the quality and condition of the beef when purchased.

    Another problem could relate to the temperature stability in your garage; freezing at night and thawing during the day may be a problem.

    The sanitation of a garage refrigerator may also cause a problem. I usually sanitize before aging.

    It also seems like an awful lot of handling. I don't understand washing the steak; that could have easily spread bacteria. I never touch the meat with my hands and sanitize my hands and tools when handling. I may turn the steak every few days.

    I have never experienced any strong odors....

    Tim
  • Post #39 - February 11th, 2010, 8:58 pm
    Post #39 - February 11th, 2010, 8:58 pm Post #39 - February 11th, 2010, 8:58 pm
    I read somewhere to rinse off the beef out of the cryopak. I didn't notice any holes from a manual tenderizer. I didn't wrap the beef in cheesecloth. Many places don't wrap (whole foods for one). Before handling the beef I scrubbed in like a surgeon, and the fridge I used is very clean. I checked the temp/humidity 2x a day for those first 5 days when i soaked up any additional fluid, and it was always where I had stated in the last post, so I don't think any freezing/thawing was going on. I will say that I couldn't get my hands on Prime when I was shopping so I settled for a Choice black angus, which may have had some effect. I have read that you can age Choice. Also, the striploin had dried out significantly by day 7, it was just in those last days that it went bad. Has anyone that has aged beef successfully for 14 days used a fan for additional airflow? Also, has anyone aged beef beyond the date on the cryopak?
  • Post #40 - February 18th, 2010, 11:59 pm
    Post #40 - February 18th, 2010, 11:59 pm Post #40 - February 18th, 2010, 11:59 pm
    I'm doing a similar process to RuinedBeef, now i'm afraid my meat is also rotten.

    I've been aging a 15 lb choice boneless strip bought from Sam's Club for the past 8 days. It has an odor that i've never smelled before. Outside looks like how its supposed to be in pictures i've seen, but I have no idea how it supposed to smell. Some places i've read said it should have a "musty" odor that smells like blue-cheese. It sure does have musty smell, but when is musty = rotten? :)

    I plan to cook it this weekend and invite family over to give it a try. Maybe I should cut it open before the 10 days of aging to see if its spoiled. What is a good indication that its spoiled besides its oozing out green stuff?

    Sorry for the silly questions, first time ager! Appreciate the help.
  • Post #41 - February 19th, 2010, 7:40 am
    Post #41 - February 19th, 2010, 7:40 am Post #41 - February 19th, 2010, 7:40 am
    My feeling is, if the word "spoiled" comes to mind, it's spoiled.

    Instinctively, you know the difference between a deep mineral tang and "bad."
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  • Post #42 - February 19th, 2010, 8:28 am
    Post #42 - February 19th, 2010, 8:28 am Post #42 - February 19th, 2010, 8:28 am
    Mike G wrote:My feeling is, if the word "spoiled" comes to mind, it's spoiled.

    Yes, absolutely, well said, the corollary to when in doubt, toss it out

    Frankly, I am always surprised when someone has success dry aging meat in a home refrigerator. A standard home refrigerator is home to numerous microbes, gremlins and nasty outliers from that long forgotten cheese to the fermenting container of borscht from Christmas. That, plus, a standard home refrigerator is opened numerous times a day and is, invariably, too humid for proper aging, it seems a no-win proposition.

    I've tried it myself with no success, read innumerable posts on BBQ list through the years of home dry age failure and, unless I had a fridge w/fan dedicated to the process would not attempt it again, certainly not for more than just a few days.

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #43 - February 19th, 2010, 11:17 am
    Post #43 - February 19th, 2010, 11:17 am Post #43 - February 19th, 2010, 11:17 am
    Dlongs wrote:My wife is a bit squeemish about the dry age mineral smell eminating from our fridge.

    My solution to this is to conduct all such experiments in the garage refrigerator, where my sweet baboo never boldly goes.
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  • Post #44 - February 19th, 2010, 9:27 pm
    Post #44 - February 19th, 2010, 9:27 pm Post #44 - February 19th, 2010, 9:27 pm
    I use the special bags available through DryBagSteak.com to dry-age in my home refrigerator. It allows moisture to permeate out through the bags while preventing air from getting in.

    Here's the latest one that I did...a 28-day choice strip loin from Sam's Club...

    Image

    Image

    Image
  • Post #45 - February 20th, 2010, 3:28 pm
    Post #45 - February 20th, 2010, 3:28 pm Post #45 - February 20th, 2010, 3:28 pm
    G Wiv wrote:
    That, plus, a standard home refrigerator is opened numerous times a day and is, invariably, too humid for proper aging, it seems a no win proposition.

    Gary


    Gary,

    Actually, the humidity in a home refrigerator is too low for proper aging; that dictates humidity above 65%. This is the reason for the many recommendations to wrap the meat in cheese cloth to reduce evaporation.

    I have been dry aging for ten years and have not once experienced any odor or growth.

    I think the secret is knowledge of proper sanitation ( I use StarSan), absolutely no handling of the beef and isolation in the coldest cooler. My refrigerator has bottom coolers that can be programed to lower temp and are sealed from the heat of door openings.

    Three days on individual cuts can dramatically improve a steak and minimize problems.

    Tim
  • Post #46 - February 20th, 2010, 4:23 pm
    Post #46 - February 20th, 2010, 4:23 pm Post #46 - February 20th, 2010, 4:23 pm
    Tim wrote:Actually, the humidity in a home refrigerator is too low for proper aging; that dictates humidity above 65%.

    Right, thanks, I misspoke.

    Tim wrote:My refrigerator has bottom coolers that can be programed to lower temp and are sealed from the heat of door openings.

    Three days on individual cuts can dramatically improve a steak and minimize problems.

    As I said in my post, if one has a dedicated refrigerator a few days dry aging may very well enhance. You have what amounts to a separate refrigerator, most people do not.

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #47 - February 22nd, 2010, 12:30 am
    Post #47 - February 22nd, 2010, 12:30 am Post #47 - February 22nd, 2010, 12:30 am
    Wow, what a dummy I am. The odor was not coming from the meat. I had some leftovers that for some odd reason was giving off a very bad smell. Threw that out, and the fridge and meat smelled perfect. Unveiled the piece of meat today, trimmed the dry parts, and grilled it. I could absolutely tell the difference. Meat was very tender, moist, and great flavor. Wow, gonna be hard going back to the regular stuff.

    That was just with 11 days of aging. I wonder if I push it another week how much more great things could be.
  • Post #48 - February 23rd, 2010, 12:16 pm
    Post #48 - February 23rd, 2010, 12:16 pm Post #48 - February 23rd, 2010, 12:16 pm
    I'm old school. I like my meat red when I buy it and cook it. :wink:
  • Post #49 - March 13th, 2013, 4:52 pm
    Post #49 - March 13th, 2013, 4:52 pm Post #49 - March 13th, 2013, 4:52 pm
    Many of you may remember the articles in Serious Eats with caveats about dry aging at home. The beef suppliers claimed it was highly suspect and home refrigerators had "too much humidity" to offer safety. This seemed to contradict academic article dictating high humidity for dry aging. A few months ago, Kenji thoroughly tested dry aging on individual cuts of steak and claimed there were no benefits. Serious Eats was filled with pleas to test primals.

    Today, Serious Eats presents the highly successful results with "The Food Lab's Complete Guide to Dry-Aging Beef at Home".

    http://www.seriouseats.com/2013/03/the- ... rious_eats

    This is a great read and has some interesting findings. There is also an interesting and disappointing test on wet aging.

    Tim
  • Post #50 - August 23rd, 2020, 8:23 am
    Post #50 - August 23rd, 2020, 8:23 am Post #50 - August 23rd, 2020, 8:23 am
    How a joint of beef hung in a Sheffield butcher's for 70 years - and the unusual reason why it was kept there
    ...
    One of the finds is a story from The Yorkshire Telegraph and Star – as The Star was known from 1898 to 1937 – which tells the story of a joint of meat that, when the piece was published in February 1906, had hung in Mr A Snape’s butcher’s shop on Sheffield’s Fitzalan Market for 70 years.

    The ‘once juicy, tempting rump’ was something of a tourist attraction, the writer observed.
    ...
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
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