I was reminded of a key benefit to the virtue of patience, as well as a great way to please one's wife, last weekend when I pulled two steaks out of the fridge and cooked them. They'd been sitting there for a week, and believe it or not, I hadn't just forgotten they were there.
Rather, I've become aware that beef is not like chicken, fish, or pork, and (to an extent) it gets better as it "wet-ages" in the package. I've also learned that meatpackers are increasingly failing to age beef (and lamb) properly. If you've tasted a steak and wanted to nail it to your Sunday shoes because it was so tough, this is one of the reasons.
And so the best way of ensuring a quality dining experience may be to let that piece of beef sit in the fridge for a while, "wet-aging" it to its proper tenderness. This may sound gross, but when it has a couple of small brown spots on it, it's at its best.
For the truly adventurous, one can try "dry aging"; a roast is placed in a humid, cool environment (say a compartment of one's refrigerator with a damp cloth to provide humidity) for a week or two. If done correctly, it is said to be as superior to wet-aging as wet-aging is to no aging. I'm trying it with a rib roast now--we'll see how it turns out.
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