Summit Treestands
Elk Loin Question
Contributors to this thread:
Lost Arra 22-Nov-21
sticksender 22-Nov-21
Al Dente Laptop 22-Nov-21
cnelk 22-Nov-21
Cheesehead Mike 22-Nov-21
Bowfreak 23-Nov-21
brettpsu 23-Nov-21
Grey Ghost 23-Nov-21
Lost Arra 23-Nov-21
Jaquomo 23-Nov-21
goelk 24-Nov-21
swede 24-Nov-21
Dale06 24-Nov-21
Treeline 24-Nov-21
Lost Arra 24-Nov-21
swede 24-Nov-21
HDE 24-Nov-21
HiMtnHnter 24-Nov-21
mrelite 24-Nov-21
txhunter58 25-Nov-21
From: Lost Arra
I cut my elk backstraps into four pieces (8 total). I like grilling larger pieces to keep things medium rare/rare on the inside.

My question is regarding the location of each loin section related to tenderness. Would it be reasonable to think the loin sections found closer to the pelvis would be more tender than those located by the front shoulder?

I usually shoot cows but this season I somehow drew an Any Elk tag (1.8% odds) and came home with a bull. This was a satellite bull who had obviously been a fighter with multiple broken tines. I don't know if fighting affects meat. The conditions for field dressing were perfect. High 30's snow on the ground so the meat cooled quickly. The first loin section I grilled was noticeably a little tougher than any of my previous cows but it got me thinking about front-to back differences. Or could it just be asskicked bull vs cow?

From: sticksender
Never noticed much difference in tenderness along the length of the backstrap. But if you inadvertently include some of the shoulder or neck meat when cutting it out, you might?

Get yourself an ANOVA Sous Vide, I am sure you already have a vacuum sealer. Season the meat, then vacuum seal. Sous Vide at 130 degrees for 3 hours, then sear on the grill or in a hot pan. Tender and juicy all the way through.

From: cnelk
I use a jaccard on every piece of meat - regardless of how it’s cooked

Ditto on the jaccard.

From: Bowfreak
I can't answer your question, the only elk I've killed had the absolute toughest backstraps that you could possibly imagine. If I ever shoot another that ends up being like that, I'll thaw the backstraps and grind them. I'd consider it taboo to grind backstraps so that tells you how tough these were.

From: brettpsu
X3 on the jaccard

From: Grey Ghost

Did you age your bull elk at all? I've never had a tough piece of back strap, if the meat was properly aged.


From: Lost Arra
GG: 5 days, maybe not long enough. This first piece of grilled loin was not shoe leather tough. It was just different than all the cows I usually shoot. At 1.8% odds it's not something I probably need to worry about in the future

From: Jaquomo
Jaccard for me, then season, vacuum seal, then sous vide for 2-3 hours on 127 (we like ours on the rare side of medium-rare). Fabulous no matter which part of the elk.

From: goelk
i'll have to to tried the jaccard. never thought of that

From: swede
Anyone that marks his packages of backstraps showing the location it came from is way beyond me. I was looking at a package of tenderloin on the kitchen counter a while back, and said to my wife, "oh I see we are having steak for dinner. Would you like me to grill it?" She said No, I am making a stew. At that point we had a discussion, but it did not even rise to the level of describing the difference between backstrap and round steak. lol

From: Dale06
I shot a large bull elk a few years ago. I grilled a chunk of the back strap. It was inedible. It was so tough you needed a chain saw to cut it. I have had dall sheep, elk and deer back strap that was tender.

From: Treeline
Seems I need to get one of those sous vide things…. Just not sure I can even pronounce it though!

I never use the jaccard on the back straps, just season up, let marinate for a few hours to a day, then grill to rare/medium rare. Always good with elk, cows or bulls.

From: Lost Arra
Hey swede I didn't mark them by location but one year we did mark backstrap packages from Dry Cow vs Wet Cow to see if we could tell a difference. We couldn't. The dry cow had a lot more fat on her body.

From: swede
Don't worry Lost. I just could not resist. I shot a large dry cow years ago that had thick fat on many places, but she was tough to chew. She too was cured well before butchering. I was expecting a fine piece of meat, but was very disappointed and left scratching my head.

From: HDE
From the shoulder blade to the last rib is your true ribeye. Section with no ribs are your t-bone. Shoulder blade forward to the neck is more along the line of a chuck steak.

From: HiMtnHnter
It's not uncommon for a bull to be on the tough side. Try marinating a few days, grill to 125 IT or so, dome and rest. Slice thin across the grain.

From: mrelite
So what amount of blades do you guys use on your Jaccard, I just took a look at them and there is a lot of options.

I also have an old bull thats pretty darn tough!

From: txhunter58
Bow, next time you have 10 lbs of elk backstrap/ tenderloin, I will trade you 15 lbs of hamburger for it :-)

  • Sitka Gear