Thursday, September 27, 2012

Aging meat - Can it be done off the bone?

Kevin from Las Vegas, NV asked:

On one of your videos you talk about aging meat. You aged the entire rib cage and bottom of the neck, before processing. Looking at being able to store it easy for the trip home. Keeping the entire rib cage and neck for travel is difficuit. Is there any reason all that meat can be removed then aged?

Great question Kevin and I'm glad to see you are thinking! Yes you can remove the meat from the carcass and then age it while it's off the bone.

I have used this process many times myself when hanging the entire carcass wasn't an option. We just returned from an elk hunt in NM, and this is exactly what we will have to do with all the elk meat that we removed from the bone right in the field. We had to get it out of the hot sun and directly into a freezer. So by freezing the meat, the aging processes can't take place. With that being said, our only option will be to age the meat off the bone right before we do the finish preparation before eating it.

However, always remember meat will age better on the bone - but if you don't have a choice, you can place the meat in pans in the bottom of your refrigerator and age it off the bone as well. This is the process that occurs with boxed beef. The animals are slaughtered and de-boned, then vacuum sealed and aged in the boxes during transit and while in retail walk-in coolers before the steaks are cut and placed in the meat case.

So to summarize: Yes you can age off the bone or on the bone. Sometimes there is just no possible way to age the carcass whole.

Thanks for the great question!

"The Meat Man"

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