Aging is a common technique used to improve two major characteristics; taste and tenderness. Essentially aging is a decomposition process that is carefully controlled so the meat does not spoil.
There are several methods of aging, ranging from dry-aging, wet-aging, butter aging. All render various results. All cuts from Rangeland Premium steaks are Wet-aged.
What is Wet-Aging?
Wet aging is more commonly used method, a process in which meat is vacuum-sealed in plastic, placed in a refrigerator and allowed to age for a period of time. At Rangeland Premium Steaks age our steaks for 28 days bone-in and 40 days boneless. This process allows enzymes in the trapped juices to break down collagen between muscle fibres, increasing tenderness. Leaving you with a premium, tender and delicious bison steak.
One difference between wet-aging and dry-aging is that wet-aging individual cuts can age. Where as dry-aging usually uses whole cuts of meat.
What is Dry-Aging?
Before the days of fridges, dry-aging was the go to way to store meat; hanging in open air environment. The dry-aging process ages large cuts of meat for weeks to months before they are cut into steaks. This method helps to develop a deeper flavour and tenderness in the steak caused by natural enzymes in the meat breaking down muscle tissues. In addition to an increase in tenderness, bacteria activity, enzyme oxidation and water loss tend to concentrate the flavour of the meat.
Dry aging requires strict control over the temperature because freezing will stop all bacterial activity, while high temperatures cause spoilage. Humidity and air movement and uniform moisture migration of the meat are factors in dry-aging.
What is Butter-Aging?
Butter-Aging is a combination hybrid of wet and dry aging. This method will intensify flavour with minimal moisture loss. The method completely envelops a cut of meat in unsalted butter and leaves it to age. The cut can be left to age for up to four weeks. This allows the butter's flavour to seep into the fibres of the meat, while enzymes continue to break down muscle tissues.
Unlike dry-aging, butter-aging doesn't leave you with crisp, dark edges.