Following the successful installation of our new dry ageing cabinet, we chatted to our Head Butcher Colin about the benefits of dry ageing our delicious locally sourced meat.
1. Where do we get our local beef from?
All of our beef comes from within a twenty mile radius of the store. In the not too distant future I hope to be sourcing more direct from farms. This combined with over fifty years of experience that our butchers have, guarantees quality that is ‘exceptional everyday’, from farm gate to plate.
2. What are the benefits of dry ageing beef?
Dry ageing improves the eating quality of the beef. It deepens the flavour, enhances the tenderness and texture by enabling the muscle fibres to breakdown in a controlled environment. This controlled environment also prevents the fat from going rancid.
3. Do we dry age all of our beef?
All our prime cuts of beef, which include Steaks (sirloin, fillet, rump & rib eye), Carvery Ribs, Cote du Boeuf and Rolled Sirloin are dry aged for a minimum of 28 days. Dry ageing, combined with selected cattle breeds and good animal husbandry ensures tenderness and flavour.
4. Are there certain cuts that work better with dry ageing?
Many of the cheaper cuts of beef, e.g. stewing beef would not benefit from dry ageing, mainly due to the way in which they are cooked.
5. What happens to the darkened outside meat?
The darkened ‘black’ face of the meat is a good indication as to how the beef is ageing. The white powdery substance that appears is a healthy mould combined with the natural salt found in the beef. This surface has the most intense flavour of the beef but once removed you are left with a lovely fresh face.
6. How best would you cook a dry aged rib of beef?
Dry aged beef is cooked in the same way as any other but the benefits and difference and noticeable when eating.
7. What are your plans for the butchery counter?
I have already started a new charcuterie range including salami, chorizo, snacking salami, air dried ham and pancetta. Watch this space for more information...
For delicious recipes using our locally sourcd meats, please visit our recipe pages HERE.