December 13, 2014 at 6:07 am #2154
I would like to try dry-aging some ribeye or loin but I don’t have a fridge I can dedicate to the process. My significant other is willing to give up the meat drawer at least for a 30-day test. Concerned that it won’t get much air circulation though. It’s a side-by-side with bottom freezer, glass shelves, LOTS of activity/kids constantly raiding it.
So can you dry-age in a meat drawer, or am I setting myself up for failure?
-MarkDecember 13, 2014 at 7:23 am #8757
Mark, welcome aboard. I’ll be perfectly blunt with you…trade your girlfriend something for permission to climb up out of that meat bin! I would never try to age meat in that confined space! You need air circulation and the fact you will have frequent open and closure of the refrig is fine – in fact that is good as it encourages air turnover. With a bottom freezer that already shows that the meat bin will be the coldest zone in your refrig. Too cold plus poor air flow will not be good! Initially SWMBO didn’t cotton much to thinking the meat would be just sitting there looking back at her, so what I did was to place my UMAi bagged meat on an elevated wire rack and pushed it to the very back and then built a wall of jars with pickles, mayo etc in front of it so it really wasn’t easily visible. That worked, plus as the meat aged and darkened and hardened she realized that it was not a horrible looking dead cow in her refrig like she I initially envisioned. Then the proof and winning touchdown was after she ate my first dry aged steak and the approval for the future efforts was a done deal! Good luck but you really do need to do some good negotiating to get out of that bin. RonDecember 13, 2014 at 7:38 am #8758December 13, 2014 at 9:03 am #8762
OK good advice. How critical is the temperature, then? I may need to get a good thermometer to make sure it’s in the right temperature range – any recommendations in that regard? I don’t trust the little Walmart ones.December 13, 2014 at 9:06 pm #8766quote LS1M” post=6222:
Mark, like stated in our Help & How To Section:
Temperature requirements for dry aging: Dry age at temperature between 34-38F. Typical household refrigerators and restaurant coolers are designed to protect food items like fruits, vegetables, fish and meats from spoilage without freezing them. Please make sure that your refrigerator maintains temperature between 34-38 F to ensure proper aging and prevent spoilage. Ensure that the UMAi Dry® material is in contact with the beef and there are no air pockets inside the bag.
RonDecember 14, 2014 at 7:49 pm #8774
Well, that’s not really what I was concerned about. I’ve found fridge thermometers very unreliable and the difference between 34 and 38 degrees is only a millimeter on the dial. I think what I’m going to do is put some jello next to the meat and use my thermapen so I can get an accurate temperature reading. Ordering my kit today 🙂December 20, 2014 at 7:11 pm #8786
I got my kit and I’ve bagged my first cut of meat 🙂 A 12.5 lb choice bone-in ribeye. I put the meat, fat cap side up, on a cookie sheet suspended by a couple of water bottles, so there’s a good 2″ of air around it. Overnight the fridge got down to 33.8 degrees (temp of a glass of water per my thermapen) but it’s probably closer to 40 now that the door’s been open some. Hoping that it’s going to be OK. I think they put small compressors on these new refrigerators to save electricity so it takes a while to cool back down again.
Question: I know that I’m not supposed to use a dorm or beer fridge because of the lack of air circulation, but what if I put in a small fan to circulate inside? Something like a computer cooling fan.
-MarkDecember 20, 2014 at 11:34 pm #8787
yes a small fan can help, but the reason the small dorm style or tiny beer refrigerators don’t work for aging is they do not remove the moisture. While the fan would help as well as at least 2 or 3 times a day opening and closing the door to turnover the air you are much better off drying in a normal refrig.
RonDecember 25, 2014 at 10:42 pm #8794
OK it’s been five days, how am I doing?
The bag seems really loose. Should I cut & reseal? Or would that let bacteria in?
-MarkDecember 25, 2014 at 11:28 pm #8795
Well crud. These bags are thin. Found two little holes, probably just made them by moving it on the wire rack. Patched with tape, cut & resealed, back in the fridge…
Merry Christmas by the way. Love my new toy 🙂December 26, 2014 at 12:29 am #8796
Mark, I watched your video – too late to tell you now, but that was pretty rough handling. After I bag mine I place it on the rack and don’t touch it again until it is done. Handling risks making holes plus causing the bond to break that has been formed. But it sounds like you found the problem and resealed…You’ll be fine! Merry Christmas! RonSeptember 1, 2019 at 9:04 pm #12540John NguyenMember
How much space do i need in my fridge to do this? My fridge space is limited, but i can make room if i need to.September 1, 2019 at 10:01 pm #12541
For dry aging and not the charcutrie the company offers 3 sizes of bags. Smallest is 10×20 suited for a roast for instance; the 12×24 is for ribeyes and strips; and the 16×28 is for brisket and short loins.
But before I go further I need to know if your refrigerator is a modern frost free unit in proper operating order. If not they really don’t recommend trying. Also when you say small then it’s important that the bagged meat will be resting on a wire rack so there is good space above and below, but the ends as well so there is proper air circulation.
RonSeptember 3, 2019 at 2:55 am #12542TheaKeymaster
You need at least one or 2 inches around the entire surface of the meat, and very good airflow. People who tried dry aging in a drawer find the meat will just rot.
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