Dry-aged steak is better – no doubt about it. With fork-cut tenderness and richly concentrated flavor, a good dry-aged steak is a steak lover’s paradise.
The keys to the perfect dry-age are airflow, humidity, temperature and time. In the right environment (like your SteakAger), these variables are expertly regulated, resulting in the controlled deterioration we know as dry-aging. Each stage of the aging process brings about different changes in the scientific makeup of the beef, introducing new flavors and textures.
How Long To Age
From Day 1 – 14 of the aging process, enzymatic changes start to occur, breaking down tough tissues and fibers. Although the beef’s flavor profile remains largely unchanged, the beef reaches high tenderness in this phase. Collagen in the beef is breaking down as well, releasing moisture. This evaporation is critical in the early stages of dry-aging to achieve the perfect steak.
From Day 14 – 28, evaporation continues, but at a slower rate. Enzymes begin to break down proteins, fats and glycogens, transforming them into new, savory components including sugars, fatty acids and amino acids. Beef starts to take on a more savory profile, and reaches the height of its tenderness. At this point, it is normal to observe approx. 10% weight loss (the beef, of course).
Day 28 – 42 is the sweet spot for your run-of-the-mill dry-ager. You may see another 5% loss, made up for by maximum flavor concentration: the beef’s flavor profile is well-balanced, with deep complexity and robust flavor.
Beyond 42 days, new flavors begin to overtake the original steak. Sharp, pungent aromas and flavors develop, which many liken to blue cheese. And just like blue cheese, such an intense flavor isn’t for everyone – you’ll have to try it yourself.
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