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Old 06-22-2004, 05:01 AM   #1
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Aged Beef

What is aged beef? Why is it SO much better than non- aged? Can someone explain? How is it done?


Thanks! :D

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Old 06-22-2004, 09:09 AM   #2
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For what it's worth and what I remember, which aint too much, when the cow it butchered the meat is hung in the cooler to age. Aging the beef creates the marble in it. When you have the marble you have more tender meat.....

Ok someone else add to my brilliance.... :roll:
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Old 06-22-2004, 09:16 AM   #3
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An internet search will give you loads of info on both methods(dry & wet ) of aging beef. The full cut of meat is stored at 34 to 36 deg for 14 to 28 days. This results in a more tender cut of meat, and in the case of dry aging concentrates the flavor through water loss.
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Old 06-22-2004, 12:13 PM   #4
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The marbling (intramuscular fat) develops while the steer is alive, not during aging. Alton explains the dry aging process this way.

"Like balsamic vinegar and hard cheese, beef improves with age. That's because like vinegar and cheese, beef is mostly water. In fact, about eight and a half pounds of this ten and a half pound roast is indeed H2O, a substance not famous for its flavor. However, in just a few days we can eliminate enough of that water to seriously intensify the flavor of the meat. This is going to take time. But that's okay, because meanwhile, enzymes inside the meat will be hard at work breaking down connective tissue, and that means a more tender piece of meat."

Fancy restaurants will have cold rooms where the meat is aged for weeks, or even months (some top steakhouses will age beef for four months!), but if you want, you can try dry aging a few steaks in a plastic tub with a perforated top in a refrigerator chilled between 36 and 38 degrees Farenheit, with around 50% humidity. Try it for 72 hours and see how it turns out.
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Old 06-22-2004, 12:14 PM   #5
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Beef has enzymes in it that, over time, break the meat down and make it more tender. "wet" aging, the kind you find in a supermarket, involves this process, to a small extent. Dry aging take it's a step further. Besides the enzymatic action tenderizing the meat, the air is extracting water from the meat, making the meat more concentrated and flavorful.

So dry aged beef, if aged correctly, is more tender and more flavorful. It's very expensive, though, because of the extra time/ processing involved as well as the loss of volume due to water evaporation.
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Old 06-22-2004, 02:44 PM   #6
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Sushi, I think all beef is aged a minimum of 14 days before arriving in your supermarket. Some of the extra aged beef is what you are paying bigger bucks for.
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Old 06-22-2004, 09:18 PM   #7
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Sushi,

I too never new about aged beef until I tried the most delicious steak EVER at Emeril's Delmonico Steakhouse in Vegas. If you can, occasionally splurge on yourself by getting some aged beef.

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Old 06-23-2004, 07:02 AM   #8
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Dry aging also works for venison. I hated venison for a long time unitl a friend of mine talked me into trying a good, dry-aged venison tenderloin. Awesome!
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Old 07-13-2004, 09:35 AM   #9
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We used to dry age sirloin all the time at the restaurant where I used to work. We would receieve half the cow and start butchering it there on premise. The outcome after aging beef is very distinct from non-aged. Actually, all the beef we sold was aged. We aged it for 2 months.
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Old 07-13-2004, 09:53 AM   #10
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What is the difference between wet aged beef and dry aged beef?

Wet aging or aging-in-the-bag has become the industry norm, 90% of aged beef is done this way. The beef is vacuum packed in plastic and sits at temperatures of 34-38 degrees for 7-28 days. Inside the plastic, the meat ages and becomes more tender yet there is no flavor development since there is not a concentration of flavor occurring with loss of moisture.

This method has become more popular because it is cheaper and more profitable. Dry aging is more costly due to the approximately 18% loss in shrinkage and extra trim required, time, storage, refrigerator space, and labor.

In a mass produced commercial environment where all attention is given to the profit margin, dry aging is being done only for a few discriminating customers.
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