Whole rib roast into steaks, by the numbers


#1

I discovered a few years ago that after New Year’s, the Costcos near me often have prime, bone-out ribeye roasts on sale for really great prices. This year I found a 19-lb beauty with incredible marbling for $10.99 a pound - $207. I wet aged it for a couple of weeks and just got around to cutting it up tonight. I seared up the scraps for dinner and if they are any indication, the steaks are going to be FABULOUS. Anyway, I was curious as to how much of the roast was actually suitable for steaks, so I weighed everything. I ended up with:

7 - 1.5 lb steaks (2" thick)
2 - 1.25 lb steaks (the two end pieces that were a bit misshapen/uneven)
1.25 lbs of scrap meat
4.75 lbs of fat

The fat was about 25% of the weight of the roast. If you include the scrap as “waste,” that number goes up to around 31%, not that I consider any of it waste. The scrap made a fabulous dinner tonight and the fat will end up in burgers.

Anyway, if you just look at the steaks, the after-trimming cost for the steaks rises to nearly $16 per pound, which is still a bargain in comparison to Costco’s normal price for pre-trimmed, pre-cut steaks (usually around $20 per pound), and of course in comparison to steakhouse pricing!

I’m hoping to add a small fridge to my basement for dry aging soon, at which point there will really be no reason to go to a steakhouse. Still, even these wet-aged steaks are usually far better than what steakhouses serve. Any other home-agers out there? Tips, tricks, etc.? I could use some pointers on getting perfectly even cuts - a couple of mine went a little sideways, so one side is thicker than the other.


(John) #2

For cutting meat like that - a REALLY sharp knife & a steady hand. With a little practice you’ll do fine. I dry-age beef per Alton Brown’s method. In a plastic box full of holes. I usually do 3 days & it comes out delicious.


#3

My knife was sharp - it’s the steady hand part I need to work on, LOL! :open_hands:


(John) #4

When I first started cutting my own meat like that it didn’t help that I was really nervous about ‘ruining’ the whole thing. There are also lots of good videos about meat cutting on YouTube.


(Junior) #5

I would like to hear your wet aging process.


#6

I have not purchased rib eye roast from Costco as they are too much of a waste for me, I do purchase it from the Italian deli (minimum half or whole) here in our county when they go on sale. (6.99/ lbs) they slice it very thin for me ,same thickness as their famous ribeye sandwich which they serve daily , give me the fat trimmings. When I arrive home, I spend time scraping off the small pieces of meat from the fat, throw the fat away for the fish, and the scraped beef from half a pound amounts to 10 meals for my pomeranians ( 26 gms for Luna, 30 gms for Wolfie) aside from the extra that they eat when I am trimming them for half a roast. I find the meat great for sandwiches, for chinese stir fry. Perhaps I should try wet aging process if I see the method . The beef that we buy from Costco are their strip loins ( I think that is what it is called ) for Fajita. We love those for grilling. However, my son unlike my husband does not like rare steak, rather a waste. Serve them rarely nowadays. So, instead,I give him D’Artagnan Duck Breast. I eat his share of the crispy skin since he throws it away or share it with my poms . We are having seared duck beast tonight, wil take photo if I remember but the poms know the word duck breast and refused to eat their evening meal when I am cooking duck breast.


#7

Is he insane??? That’s the best part! :laughing:


#8

No process, really - I got a tip from someone here (@Tom34, I believe?) just to look for cuts that are very tightly sealed in cryovac and have minimal juices in the packaging. Then stick it in the fridge unopened and leave it for a while. I usually go about 2 weeks past the sell by date on the packaging, sometimes more. It doesn’t develop the distinctive flavor of dry aging but it definitely makes the meat much more tender.


(Junior) #9

You do this for pre-cut / individual steaks or entire rib roasts?


#10

I know but I and my poms benefit from it. Of course the poms can only have a small amount as I also watch their weight
I used to roast pork belly until the skin comes out very very crispy as in lechon.
He likes that but he will scrape every piece of fat under the crispy skin and instructed me not to cook that except once a year.
Once, when he was in his twenties, he was a model for Boss, he passed out. He had to drink olive oil to regain his health bec he did not eat any kind of fat at all!!!
I cannot cook food with mushroom, cannot use mayonnaise, most items thing that are white ( sour cream, cream fraiche to name a few)


#11

Only with whole roasts. Not sure how it would work on cut steaks - you’d have to be sure to seal them really well with a Foodsaver or something, I would think, but even then I would be a bit leery that too much surface had been exposed.


(Junior) #12

Well they sell individually cut, pre-packaged steaks so I wasn’t sure if you were speaking of them when you said “cuts” in your description. When you open the whole rib roast, is there the typical dry aged mold on the meat? Do you have to do any additional trimming for spoilage as you do with dry aging? You say you don’t get the same flavor, then why do you bother with the wet aging? Does it increase tenderness in a choice grade? What do you see as the advantages?


#13

No mold with wet aging - or if there is, something has gone horribly wrong, LOL. No spoilage or loss of weight, either, which is why I think restaurants (aside from truly top-notch steakhouses) prefer to wet-age (if they age at all). The process, IMO, is more about tenderness than flavor, although you do get a little bit of funk (different from dry age funk) if you leave it too long. The tenderizing effects are well worth the wait, though. Once I have a dedicated space for dry aging I will definitely do that, since I prefer that flavor, but for now the wet aging takes an already good piece of meat to another level with minimal effort.


(Junior) #14

Interesting. I’ve had what has been advertised as “wet aged” steaks in several restaurants and haven’t found them to be that great. Or I should say not that great compared to my personal favorite dry aged prime grade steaks. My only personal experience is with retail / restaurant dry aging, of which I’m pretty familiar however never courageous enough to try it at home.

I have a local butcher who sells prime aged beef for about $ 14.99 lbs which I’m willing to pay. Also they claim to have Kobe @ $ 99.99 lbs which I have yet to try, but will soon!!!


#15

if it is rib eye sliced very thinly for sandwiches or stir fry, then, if it is for tenderness rather than flavor do you not agree that the rib eye alone is very tender when sliced that thin and thus does not need the added wet aging?


#16

Oh, I agree - IMO wet aging has nothing on dry aging. However, it is a very easy way to improve Costco meat at home! If you can get prime aged ribeye for $14.99 a pound you need to let us all know where so we can start shopping at your butcher! I think Stew Leonard sells aged bone-in porterhouse for $20/lb, but I haven’t tried it so can’t comment on quality. I also don’t know how long it is aged, etc.

If I were going to use ribeye thinly sliced for sandwiches or stirfry I probably wouldn’t bother to wet age it, because as you noted it is quite tender when sliced thin. I almost always cook ribeye as thick steaks, though, and DH likes them practically raw inside, so the extra tenderizing is most welcome.


#17

If your knife is sharp and you’re comfortable with it - my tip for an even cut would be to trim one end so that it is flat, (assuming right handed otherwise reverse this), place your left palm flat on the cut end (rest of roast pointing to right) with fingers spread, now cut steak with right hand.

I don’t know the neurological backbone of this but your brain somehow knows in space where your left hand is and tries to keep what your right hand is doing parallel.

A similar trick can be used when cutting long strips of say dough with a pizza wheel. Put your finger on the opposite end of the dough and roll towards your finger - for some reason it helps keep you on track better than eyeing it. (Of course a long ruler is better but it helps a lot).


#18

Very interesting! I was holding the meat with my left hand with the same position I use for cutting vegetables, with my hand on top of the meat and fingertips curled under. I will try this trick next time and report back!


#19

There should be no mold on either wet or dry aged roasts – not if you are doing it correctly.


(Junior) #20

I’m not sure what method of dry aging you are using however I can assure you all of the premier prime dry aged steakhouses have significant mold on their steaks by the conclusion of the aging process. I have no affiliation with this video but if you google it you will find dozens of others similar to this.