I realize I can JFGI, but I wanted to ask here before I dive in.
They had some on sale at Fareway (small Midwestern discount grocery chain) for $8.99, so I picked up a large T-bone, which should be good for several meals. I’ve never cooked, or had, aged beef, so what should I expect?
The guy at the meat counter, who was 20 years old at the most, said that a lot of people are grossed out by the idea, and some people even consider it spoiled. I do know that it’s been stored long-term in carefully controlled conditions, and is not spoiled although it is somewhat, ahem, decomposed.
I don’t cook it any different than regular beef. It should already be trimmed, so just salt, pepper, and maybe some garlic powder, sear, cook to an internal of 125 (or do it the reverse method, where you cook it in the oven at 225 to evenly cook up to about 100, then finish it over a very hot pan or grill for about one two minutes a side to bring it up to 120-125. Here’s the technique in detail.) If you want to get a little more decadent, baste it in garlic butter at the end.
Is Aged Beef something specifically they sell normally in their butcher section, or do you mean “reduced in price because it’s close to the best use-by date?” If the latter I have no problem buying and cooking *Manager’s Special" beef as our local (HyVee) store calls it; I simply cook it as normal. I figure beef gets aged anyway, so this should be OK. On the other hand, I avoid any such pork or chicken deals, since they usually actually smell somewhat rotten.
Don’t do this with aged beef. The aging process removes a significant amount of moisture to concentrate the flavors. An aged steak needs to be well seared before bringing up the temp inside. Use tongs; not a fork for turning. If you are one of those people who can gauge doneness without sticking a thermometer into it, do that. Let it rest for at least five minutes before serving. DON’T LET ANY MOISTURE ESCAPE!
Yes, it is a very pervasive myth, especially since searing is genuinely important for the development of flavor. And “sear the meat to seal in the flavor” is much easier to communicate than “sear the meat to activate complicated chemical reactions which blah blah blah.”
But chefs like J Kenji Lopez Alt have made careers at the intersection of cooking and science.
It doesn’t matter, because none of the things you mentioned contribute to “losing juices.” Searing steak doesn’t create a liquid-proof barrier, and your own cite says to use a meat thermometer (against your own advice).
eta: I would be willing to look at a cite proving that the proteins in dry-aged steak do form a liquid-proof barrier when given a hard sear, and eat crow afterwards.
You can google “dry aged reverse sear” and find plenty of cites advocating its use:
Have you tried it? I have, and it works well. I mean, if you prefer not to reverse sear, that’s fine. For me, it works a treat and I’m willing to do it with very expensive steaks.
And, yes, use a meat thermometer. You don’t lose any significant moisture that way. I can do a steak without a thermometer, but if I’m spending $60+/lb, I like to be extra sure. You can touch the meat, yes, and get a decent idea of how done it is, for sure. But nothing is wasted by poking the thing. That’s just myth.
There’s aged beef, and then there’s high meat. Feel kinship with your paleo ancestors.
"People’s reasons for eating rotten meat seem to differ from person to person. Some enjoy the feeling of euphoria that apparently comes from eating decomposed meat – a Reddit user described a feeling of “euphoria, unity, and family.”
Thawed it and cooked it this evening. This thing is big enough for 3 meals, so I had the first one, and it was very good, quite tender and almost buttery in texture. If I see it again for $8.99 a pound, I’ll buy some again.