Dry Aging Beef

Dry Aged Beef…what is it…can I do it at home?

 

I’ll describe what it is and yes you can Dry Aged Beef at home. A must to try if you love your beef.. But first let me explain a little about Dry Aged Beef.

You’ve likely seen Dry Aged Beef on steakhouse menus or on television or heard about it from people at barbecues. Well what is it?
Dry-Aged-Image

Dry Ageing is how beef is aged for tenderizing and flavour enhancement. During the 1980’s, the most common process was called Wet Ageing. Now as beef prices started to increase, the industry started vacuum packing the primal cuts to stop moisture loss. Meat is sold by weight so more weight retained, more profit and a way to keep meat affordable. Leaving the meat in the vacuum bag for a length of time was the process of Wet Ageing. The meat became tender but the flavours didn’t improve by much.

Dry Aged Beef is stored in custom designed, dry ageing coolers, at your top line butcher shops, where a complex process incorporates an intricate and delicate balance of time, temperature, air circulation and humidity. Over time, as the beef ages openly, exposed to the elements inside the cooler, the beef’s enzymes break down the collagen, which is what holds the muscle fibres together, and tenderize the meat. The collagen is broken down and all you have left is the protein, giving it a unique flavour and ensuring utmost tenderness. It is actually a controlling of decomposition.

There are many descriptions of the enhanced flavours and these can be different depending on how much marbling the beef has, what the animal’s diet has been and the actual time the beef has been aged.

Some descriptions are: buttery and rich, smooth in taste and texture, superior in taste and tenderness, mellow and intense and earthy and nutty. Quite a few there but I guess it’s like “how do you want your steak done” Everyone has their own taste and opinion.

Does it matter how long it ages?

Well yes. The longer the beef ages, the more tender the beef becomes. The time in the drying cooler will determine the tenderness, flavour and also cost. For the beef to dry, moisture obviously must evaporate. Moisture loss means weight loss which means cost increase. As well as moisture loss, the beef forms a dry crust on the surface. So when the primal is ready for cutting, there will be heavy trimming loss to get to the best tender, tasty beef.  Hence the cost also increases.

Some pictures below…

Before Dry Ageing  started…

The primal is fresh and moist

 

 

 

 

         21 days after storage….

         The primal is starting to dry

 

 

 

 

Dry Aged Beef 30 Days30 days after drying..

The moisture has continued to

leave the primal and the crust is forming

 

 

 

Dry Aged Beef 120 Days

        120 days drying…

        The moisture well and truly evaporated

some 35% of original weight. The heavy

weight loss and trimming will increase

the cost of  this beauty for sure.

 

 

dry aged beef 2 The end result…

 A succulent tender well trimmed piece of steak. It’s for the beef connoisseur to go with an expensive dry-aged-stk-cookedbottle of red wine.

120 days dry aged is quite extreme and  any time after 30 days  is my recommendation of a minimum time frame. It all depends on each and every persons preference. 40 days, 50 days, etc etc… The flavour and tenderness will just intensify.

 

So How Can I do this at home?

Yes you can but not exactly the process above.

Our home refrigerator is not designed to keep consistent temperature and humidity control. Lets face it, we have to store everything in our fridge. Vegetables, dairy, cold cuts and meat.

I have found an outstanding product available that you can use to produce your own Dry Aged Beef at home.

Artisan Dry Aged Steak Starter Kit by UMAi Dry®

  • Create Dry Aged Steak in your refrigerator with special UMAi Dry® technologyumai-dry-steak-bag
  • Unique UMAi Dry® breathable membrane creates a perfect dry ageing environment
  • Use your fridge to age whole sub primal cuts of beef with no mess, no odours
  • Your result is delicious dry aged steak that will impress your friends and family
  • Once you try UMAi Dry® aged steak, you will know true gourmet steaks

The use of bags is different to the way the experts do it but you can still get a great result. The bags are different to normal bags as during the ageing process the bag turns into a membrane that allows the moisture to escape but not allow oxygen to re-enter the bag creating the perfect seal for dry ageing and eliminate the mess.

This product has been sold for more than 6 years by UMAi Dry® with thousand of satisfied customers.

The kit comes with…

  • Vacuum Sealer to apply the bags,umai-dry-steak-bag-vac-machine
  • an assortment of bags for boneless rib eye, strip loin
  • smaller roast bags as well as
  • vacuum storage bags for your finished dry aged steaks to keep in the freezer
  • a complete set of instructions for dry ageing as well as
  • adapters for use with the vacuum sealing machine.

 

Some photos of the process and finished productumai-dry-steak-bag-vac-primal

 

         Vacuum Packed  Beef Primal 

 

 

 

 

umai-dry-steak-bag-vac-dry-primal

 

 

       Dry Aged Whole Primal  

 

 

 

 

 

umai-finished-dry-aged-steak

   

 

 

UMAi ® Dry Aged Rib Eye Steaks

Ready To Cook

 

 

 

For click here for replacement Dry Age Bags

Using this kit is easy and yields incredible tasting steaks just like a pro…

 

As well as the Artisan Dry Aged Steak Starter Kit by UMAi Dry®  

you should also try these other

Artisan Dry Ageing Kits by UMAi Dry®

Artisan Dry Sausage Kit by UMAi Dry® 500mm (2″)

umai-dry-sausage-kit

Artisan Dry Sausage Kit by UMAi Dry® 32mm (1 1/4″)

umai-dry-sausage-kit-32mm

Artisan Dry Cured Meats Charcuterie Starter Kit by UMAi Dry®

Become the expert in your family….umai-dry-cured-meats-charterie-kit

 

I want you to get enjoyment out of meat and experiencing Dry Aged Beef and Dry Aged Sausages and Dry Aged Charcuterie is some thing you will never forget.

 

 

 

umai-dry-cured-meats

 

 

Dry Cured Meats

Artisan Dry Ageing Seasoning’s and Bags by UMAi Dry®

Seasoning’s,   Casing’s   and   Charcuterie Bags

 

umai-finished-dry-sausage

Become a pro at home with 

Artisan Dry Ageing Products by UMAi Dry®

and impress your friends and family next time they come over for a BBQ or visit for a drink…

I hope I have answered some questions on Dry Aged Beef and please feel free to leave a comment or if you have further questions please don’t hesitate to ask.

You can also click HERE for MAKE AT HOME KIT IDEAS.

I am always here to help… john@askjohnthebutcher.com

8 comments

  1. Joseph Mo says:

    I have to say as I was reading this, my mouth was all watery, I wanted that steak! I guess you learn new things every day, I’ve read about dry aging here with you today, so that’s how one can achieve tender meat huh? 120 days? wow! Thanks for this information

    • John says:

      Hi Joseph, thanks for dropping by. Yes the steaks become very tender and succulent with the Dry Aging process. Next time you get a chance to try one you will appreciate it more now you know and understand how delicate the meat can become.

      Just another way of treating yourself to one of the finer parts of life.

      Thanks John

    • dtenter says:

      I thought about doing a DIY dry aging system once. The ones you do in a dorm fridge, with the fan and controller. I love steak, but that just seemed to much trouble.

      But this looks like a great option. I already have a Food Saver vacuum sealer. Do you have a link where I can buy just the bags?