How much trimming before you grind your burger?

WAB

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I'm curious about how much trimming you do before grinding your elk burger - mainly wondering about the "silver skin" sheath layers (not the fat or tendons).

In your opinion, does the silver skin taint the flavor of the burger if it's not removed?

Would also like to hear your preferred method for removing the silver skin.

And do you use the lower leg meat for burger (the part with lots of sheath/silver skin) and tendons?

Thanks fellas!
 

BBob

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We do use lower leg sections in the burger. Some of the smaller sections just get thrown in and ground. I don't get worried over removing every last bit of silver skin. Fillet it off the best you can and grind. Trying to get too picky to get it all just takes too much time and IMO it doesn't matter in the end product.
 

Buffalo0922

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I cut anything that looks like it could be a steak into steaks. Once in awhile I’ll get a tougher steak but the flavor is still great. The rest gets ground up. I don’t trim much at all and have never had any gamey taste.

Deer on the other hand I get more picky on - deer fat has much stronger flavor
 

hobbes

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I fillet off most of the silver lining on the larger pieces of meat, not so much on the smaller pieces. I grind the lower legs, but too low and you turn into more tendon than meat. I don't want burger that's hard to chew.
 

Bubblehide

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I have filleted off every bit of sliver skin, it is a ton of work, so I do not do it often. But, having a sharp knife to cut through the first layer of sliver skin and a slightly dull knife to fillet really helps. The end product is exceptional.
 

mparks270

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I don’t generally grind neck or shanks. Anything else, I might grind with minimal trimming. Never really trim silver skin from the grind pile anymore.

Best thing to do is try making some burger without trimming and see if it works for you. Huge time saver.
 

JustBen

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Silverskin will not taint the flavor - that typically comes from fat. You can remove a lot of it through separating muscle groups and using a good, sharp, flexible knife - I personally use a Havalon.

You can grind the lower leg / neck pieces finer than the rest of the ground and it helps make a better textured burger in the end. As long as it doesn't make up too much of the overall product, you won't notice it.

I also believe in grinding some of the more "questionable" steaks as well, as the better the meat that you put in, the better the burger will come out. I've never understood the practice of trying to get so many steaks out of an animal that the quality of those steaks suffers as a result.
 

One-shot

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Spring Creek, Nevada
I'm curious about how much trimming you do before grinding your elk burger - mainly wondering about the "silver skin" sheath layers (not the fat or tendons).

In your opinion, does the silver skin taint the flavor of the burger if it's not removed?

Would also like to hear your preferred method for removing the silver skin.

And do you use the lower leg meat for burger (the part with lots of sheath/silver skin) and tendons?

Thanks fellas!
We grind lower leg/shank portions. Get off some membrane, but not an issue. Pretty sure it’s an “elk talk” myth that membrane/blue skin taints meat. Pretty much what taints is not getting cape off and lungs out asap and not chilling immediately after pack out. We always hope for 32ish or colder night temps in case it’s a multi-day pack out (our backs).
 

ozyclint

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I never take off silver skin. Way too much work and inevitability you waste too much meat, IMO. Just grind it up. If anything it gets caught on the grinder plate and you may have to clear the plate a couple of times during a batch. The end result is the same- silver skin removed but it was done the easy way with the grinder.
 

Seeknelk

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So what are we all calling silver skin?
#1- the totally transparent membrane called myofascia I think.
#2 tendons in all their varying thicknesses .

Anyway, for burger there is zero chance I'm removing the fascia and only some of it on steaks, roasts it breaks down in the instant pot, holds in moisture.
I remove the easier to get at tendons, flop and fillet method and don't worry about some here and there. I trim most any fat.
The hocks and neck are wayyyy too incredible in the instant pot whole to waste on burger. I wish animals all had more necks. I'd like to try giraffe😁🤔 but I'd need a bigger pot.
The osso bucco from this year's bear is unreal, literally like fatty, tasty beef roast.
 

Huntnnw

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if you have a small grinder I use to trim allot of silver skin as it plugged up grinders. Now i have a big grinder and dont worry at all about it.
 

magtech

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Have an old 1/2 hp grinder from the 40s. After some work it will grind anything. Silver skin, sure. Frozen burger, yup. Frozen fat and burger, of course. Just send it and try not to lose a finger or hand
 

camping1601

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As the years have gone by I trim less and less and the end product is no worse IMO. We still remove a lot of it but focus on the thicker parts and the fat.
 

mparks270

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I do lop off anything that looks like fat or just pure connective tissue. Really helps to chop into 2" cubes and/or partially freeze before grinding. I have an under-powered grinder that I really need to upgrade. I have to stop and unclog strands of silver skin if I leave the meat chunks too long. Rarely do more that 15# at a time so it's not a huge hassle.
 

Poser

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Bring your meat twice and don’t worry about it.

I worked for awhile in a butcher shop. We had a grinder that you could have dumped a whole body in and, even then, all meat was ran through twice. Compare chuck with venison and a 10 HP grinder with your 1/2 HP and you see the light here.
 

roosiebull

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oregon coast
I'm curious about how much trimming you do before grinding your elk burger - mainly wondering about the "silver skin" sheath layers (not the fat or tendons).

In your opinion, does the silver skin taint the flavor of the burger if it's not removed?

Would also like to hear your preferred method for removing the silver skin.

And do you use the lower leg meat for burger (the part with lots of sheath/silver skin) and tendons?

Thanks fellas!
Silver skin is fine, that slimy bubbly membrane on top of silver skin is not ok… I’m very tedious trimming meat to grind, some silver skin and meat is the only thing that goes through the grinder… not fun at the time, but very much worth it the rest of the year
 

roosiebull

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I normally grind the lower legs after a lot of trimming, but the best thing to do with lower legs is can or slow cook… but especially can

Lower legs and neck are made for the canner
 

Danny Hoey

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Veradale, Wa
Lower leg portions get saved, not ground.

I don't go crazy trimming silverskin. A fillet knife will help you a lot in removing it......
 
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