Dry-Aged Steak: Why Some People Prefer it

There are few things in life that will make your senses come alive like the experience of eating a dry aged steak. The mere mention of this delicious food brings on memories of backwoodsmen savaging through the woods for a big juicy steak many moons ago. Back then it was only the rich and famous who had access to this fantastic food, and back then they were cutting steaks with pitch forks and knife blades. Now you can have your steak at home and enjoy a hearty meal without having to go and spend one thousand dollars for a meal. You can make a steak at home for well under a hundred bucks, and if you do choose to make your own dry aged beef there are a few simple steps that you will need to take to make your meat easy to prepare and healthy to eat.

To prepare your beef simply place it in a zip lock bag and add a mixture of the following ingredients. Do not put salt or any other seasoning inside the bag as the meat will absorb a lot of the seasoning and this will ruin the taste of your steak. A good mix of onions, garlic, peppers, herbs, any spices, any seasonings, and of course salt are all that you need. Be sure that all of your seasonings mesh well together, this makes a great base for your dry aged steak. The cheesecloth that you use should be wrung very carefully to prevent excess air from entering the bag, and the steak should be placed in the refrigerator for several hours.

After about four hours in the fridge your beef should be ready to serve. If you prefer a very tender steak then it is best to allow it to sit overnight. Once you have let the meat sit overnight you can serve it the next day by wrapping it in the cheesecloth that you used during the process of drying the beef. This will help maintain the tenderness of the beef while it sits overnight. This process can be repeated as many times as necessary to create the desired results. Any cut of dry-aged steak that is used to make this dry rub should be allowed to sit at room temperature to preserve its tenderness.

It is important to remember that the goal of the dry rub is to give your meat a browned, or darkened color. There are two primary reasons for this: first, to allow the flavors to meld more readily with the meat; and second, to help dry-age the meat. Dark meat will brown more quickly than light meat and browning also helps make the steak taste better. While you may think this seems like an unnecessary step, it really does help seal in those wonderful flavors that only a dry rub can offer.

Two to three days is about the right amount of time for proper marinating. If you marinate your steak overnight or longer, the steak will likely dry out before the end of the seven days. If you marinate for less than seven days, the steak will dry out too quickly to allow the natural meat flavors to meld properly with the other ingredients in your dry rub mixture. Remember, if you want your steak to retain all of its natural flavor, you must allow the steak to sit for the necessary seven days.

Dry-aging your steak will not change the fact that it will take some time for your steak to reach its optimum moisture loss potential. The key to this process is making sure you mimic the moisture loss process your steak will go through as it grows. This can be accomplished by cutting your steak into thin, even strips and rubbing the outer layers of meat with your dry rub mixture. Just make sure you keep your moisture levels high enough that neither the pink nor the red outer layers meld together until the steak has dried out completely.