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October 21, 2017 at 12:13 am #2971
This my 1st post but not me 1st dry age. About a year ago I dried a boneless rib eye for 24 days. I know that is too short now but then I was anxious and needed to get it out, broken down, and tested. It was good but the was not a choice or prime (a weak moment when buying it) so I’m sure could have been better. I broke it down the same way I had a wet aged rib eye before, pealing the cap off and then steaking out the eye. Cap steaks are about the best thing I remember eating, what a cut (seen about 2:20 into this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eJH3qwIHeDc). More recently I had a 12lb prime strip loin that I wet aged for a bit. That was some very good steak but for an upcoming weekends at a friend’s camp I wanted more.
I started with a 15lb prime strip loin. I would post a picture but don’t see how to without a link to a 3rd party site. Drained the thing, then into a dry bag, sealed up well, and into the basement refrigerator on a homemade rack that is about 1.5” above the bottom glass shelf. That was 15 days ago. My plan going in was for a 35 day age so I could steak it out on 11/9 for the 11/10-11/13 weekend. Well after spending the last two weeks reading about everything on the forum (I’m 44 pages into the main section, back 5+ years) I’ve rethought a few things and wanted to present my updated plan for consideration and comments. Things I know from a lot of reading are:
- It is my meat, do whatever (not meant to offend, just what I read)
- Don’t play with the meat after it goes in the fridge (I’ve tried but fail at this a little)
- Strip loins might be best aged to 28-35 days because they are thinner/smaller than rib eyes
- The longer it ages the less water it gives up but it still tenderizes and flavors.
My prime strip loin was 15.25lb minus the fluid that went down the sink (I didn’t measure it). It was a thick piece of meat with a thin fat cap. Much thinner than I see on a brisket, the last strip loin, or rib eye. Almost like it had been trimmed up then cryovac’d. So based on the thickness of the meat, thin fat cap, and 15lb weight it might be good at 35-45 days but the calendar and planned weekend away won’t support more than 35 days.
I plan to steak out 1st and trim 2nd. I’ve got the time so why not get the best from each steak?
I also read about not over trimming things as there is some really good flavor to be had. It maybe a little dried out but it can be cut away after cooking if wanted.
Then I came across info from the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association Link on this site https://www.drybagsteak.com/forum/17-dry-aging-with-drybags/3027-wetage-dryage?start=6 It mentioned improvements by Food Saver bagging after dry aging then continuing to age in the fridge for a period before use/freezing. Sounds similar to what I do with cheese I cold smoke and steaks, roasts, birds I cook. Why not dry aged meat? The moistness in the middle might work toward the dryer outside and soften the bark some making a better eat later. If this is true there could be less trimming waste. The steaks might have a more consistent moisture level from edge to center to edge. Not sure if that is the case or would make a difference but in theory it might. The stronger edge flavor might work in some. While it is in the food saver bag in the fridge it will still be aging, enzymes will still be doing their thing, and in theory tenderization will continue. Continued moisture loss at this point in a dry aging does not seem significant so stopping it at this point might not be a big factor.
So I’m thinking of doing the following:
- At 28 days open the dry bag and cut off about ~45% of the strip loin.
- Food Saver bag this piece, weigh it, and put back in the fridge.
- Cut off one steak to be Food Saver bagged, weighed, and frozen as a 28 day dry age sample.
- Roll up the dry bag end, chip clip it closed, weigh it, and put the remaining ~45% back in the fridge to continue dry aging.
- At 35 days weigh all. Only the dry age piece should change. Steak out both pieces and make sure to label them properly. Make some notes about the bark difference if it exists.
- Take some really nice steaks with me for the weekend and ask the guys to compare them.
Thanks for all of the past posts and education!
PeterOctober 21, 2017 at 3:11 pm #11309
FYI – the vacuum storage (Food Saver bagging) after dry aging is mentioned at the bottom of page 3 of this document on Dry Aging of Beef.
http://www.beefresearch.org/CMDocs/BeefResearch/PE_Executive_Summaries/Dry_Aging_of_Beef.pdfOctober 21, 2017 at 3:55 pm #11310JimMember
Peter, this is super interesting. Keep us informed how it goes.October 24, 2017 at 12:26 am #11316
I finally got the ability to post pictures back so here are a few.
BTW – my meat store’s specials this week include
So if your in the Buffalo, NY area this week grab some.October 24, 2017 at 1:17 am #11317Ron PrattMember
Looking good, POHNY! Please keep us posted with your progress and results! RonNovember 2, 2017 at 4:34 pm #11329
Well 28 days got here fast. Not fast enough but I was able to survive the wait. I took the Prime Strip out and weighed it up. It started at 15lbs and was 12lbs 4oz or 12.25lbs which comes out to about 19% loss. It would be 20% if I counted the starting weight as the full purchase weight of 15.25lbs but that had juicy stuff in the bag (that I didn’t weigh) so I’m going with 15.0lbs as my start.
Here it is before I stated my work today.
I forgot to take a meat side pic before cutting the bag. It had a perfect seal before I got to it.
28dayPrimeStrip_12lb4ozNovember 2, 2017 at 4:35 pm #11330
I cut is in two (about 45%/55%) and here is the cut shot.
I then cut off a nice 1lb 5oz steak and shrink wrapped it in a Food Saver bag. Off with it to the freezer with it.
A 5lb 1oz chunk got Food Saver’d and went back in the refrigerator for 7 more days of aging but the dry aging process is stopped for it.
PrimeStrip28dayDryAgeFoodSaverbag7daysinRefrigeratorNovember 2, 2017 at 4:36 pm #11331
The remaining 5lb 12oz chunk was resealed in the dry bag and went back in the refrigerator for 7 more days of dry aging. I got a decent but not perfect seal 1st try so stayed with it.
I was very happy with what I saw of the fat cap and marbling. I’ll be interested in seeing if there is a difference between the two 35 day aged pieces (35 day dry age vs. 28 day dry age + 7 day food saver aged) and the 28 day dry aged then frozen.
Like I mentioned the meat shop had more Prime on sale last and this week so I picked up a 14.6lb USDA Prime Certified Angus Beef CAB Ribeye for my next dry age project. It is wet aging in a small refrigerator until I free up dry age space in the basement refrigerator.
The money shot for this ribeye is the mismarked price. $5.99 instead of advertised sale price of $8.99. I just had to bring it home.
PeterNovember 10, 2017 at 2:41 am #11341
Well the day was finally here and I did some steak cutting, trimming, and bagging. The 35 day dry aged piece surprised me by only losing an ounce more weight over the last 7 days. It cut up well and was typically hard to cut through the dried wax like meat side of the piece.
The steaks looked good to me.
35DA-steaksNovember 10, 2017 at 2:41 am #11342
Now the 28 day dry aged then 7 day food saver bag aged piece was different. It obviously did not lose anymore weight those last 7 days but there was some action. I could tell right away that their was moisture in the bag when I cut it open. There was a thin coating of moisture similar to molasses or a balsamic reduction. Like I said, this was thin and it was sticky. Obviously the moisture didn’t come through the bag so it must have worked back out of the meat and it definitely softened the bark.
A closer look at the moisture.
Now this piece was easier to cut into steaks. The waxy bark was soft even after dabbing it with a paper towel to dry it up some.November 10, 2017 at 2:50 am #11343
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