Effects of dry, vacuum, and special bag aging; USDA quality grade; and end-point temperature on yields and eating quality of beef Longissimus lumborum steaks
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This study evaluated the effects of three aging methods: (dry (D), wet (W), and special bag (SB)); two quality grades [USDA Choice(>= Small(50) marbling) and Select); and two cooked end-point temperatures (62.8 degrees C and 71.1 degrees C) on physico-chemical traits of instrumental tenderness, color, and sensory properties of Longissimus lumborum beef muscle. Dry-aged loins had higher (P<0.0001) weight loss than W or SB aged loins. However, D and SB aged loins had similar (P>0.05) combined losses. W aged loins had higher (P<0.01) L* values than D or SB aged loins. Warner-Bratzler shear force of steaks was not affected (P>0.05) by aging method or quality grade but increased (P<0.0001) as end-point temperature increased. Sensory panel evaluation also showed no effect (P>0.05) of aging method or quality grade on myofibrillar tenderness, juiciness, connective tissue amount, overall tenderness or off flavor intensity. Steaks cooked to 62.8 degrees C were juicier (P<0.05) than those cooked to 71.1 degrees C. Neither D nor SB aging had advantages over W aging.