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Aging Beef @ Home

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Pls Help: Does it make sense to dry age filet mignon at home? My ultimate objective is to serve filet mignon, but to save money I will purchase a centercut roast/Châteaubriand and then cut it into filets. My plan is to age the whole piece of the centercut roast then trim and cut it. I assume the terms centercut roast tenderloin and Châteaubriand are interchangeble. Correct? Would appreciate your response by 1 Feb since this is an anneversary dinner.     

post #2 of 5

It makes almost no sense to"dry age" beef at home, unless you have a tremendous amount of refrigerator space, don't care what it smells like, and don't mind a lot of waste.  Your best bet to dry age is to buy from a butcher who either sells dry aged meat, or has the space and inclination do it for you. 

 

It does make sense to "wet age" at home though.  All that takes is a home vacuum sealer and space in the fridge.  If you're using larger cuts already sealed in cryovac by the packer, you don't even need a sealer.   

 

Wet aged meat is not the same as dry aged, but the flavors are significantly better developed than fresh and there's hugely less waste than dry aging.

 

Good sealers rock.

 

BDL

post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 

Thank you.  1). As I understand you all I need do is place the roast in a vaccum sealed bag?  2) Are the center-cut roast and Châteaubriand the same?

post #4 of 5
Technically speaking, you cannot dry age meat that has been processed this far. You really need to do this with a sub primal cut with the bones still attached. If you truly want a dry aged steak, my recommendation would be to just buy them ready to go from a good butcher. The time, skill, and space needed for this is just not worth it if I am understanding your reasons.

Now all that being said... the steak you are looking at has already been wet aged ( most likely). Anything you do to this meat will not make it dry aged. I do, however, like to wrap these type steaks in paper towel and " let them breathe" for a few days before using them. Kind of a fake dry age I guess. I'm not completely convinced that this technique has a significant effect on the steak, but itdoes take care of the mustiness that comes with wet ageing.

Your thinking is correct enough for layman's terms. I'm sure someone will be around for the technical definition if you are at all interested.
A person who never made a mistake, never tried anything new.  - Al E
Guests, like fish, begin to smell after three days.  - Ben Franklin
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A person who never made a mistake, never tried anything new.  - Al E
Guests, like fish, begin to smell after three days.  - Ben Franklin
Reply
post #5 of 5

"Center cut" and "chateau briand" can be, but are not necessarily the same.  Frequently the chateau is taken from the large end of the tenderloin primal, just as frequently it's the middle section.  You can steak out the entire fillet (except the tail) and call the smaller steaks turnedos and "petite filet mignon," and just call the bigger ones, "filet mignon."  

 

I think the idea of the chateau briand is that it's a large enough piece to cook as a roast, large enough to serve 2, but doesn't include the "tail."  Other than that, it's kind of regional and even up to the individual butcher.  One of the butcher shops I use most frequently, How's, sells a piece of Prime top sirloin they call chateau briand; and they aren't trying to fool anyone either.  It's my preferred steak to cook "Santa Maria" style. 

 

The tenderloin is a primal and they are sold in individual cry-o-vac bags which you can hold for a month to develop better flavor.  Whether or not the meat is "wet aged" or sold fresh by packer to retailer depends.  I'm not saying Sparkle is wrong about this, but it's inconsistent.  Meat is usually sold fresher rather than older, because most retailers don't want to spend the money to hold a bunch of back stock in their reefers -- and for a lot of other reasons.  In any case, you can always ask. 

 

You can also order in advance and ask the butcher to hold for you; or, you can usually find places who will sell you high quality, dry-aged meat if you look around.  Very, very expensive; and if you're out in the boonies -- rots o' ruck.

 

If you're going to vac-pack and wet age in your refrigerator, use bigger rather than smaller pieces.  I don't think I'd try wet aging meat already cut into individual steaks... too much surface area.

 

BDL

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