How to cure elk into ham
I have two Elk tenderloins that I’m looking into using a ham cure. Last elk camp one of the guys brought some for snacks and it was incredible. Tastes just like ham with a more rich flavor.
He said it was a brine method, and didn’t remember where he got the cure, so the search is on.
Not really looking for the 3 week method, as these tenders are about 2 lb each. He said he tried the bacon cure on one batch, and it was too salty, then tried the ham cure and it turned out great.
You could either use a cover brine, or you could inject the tenderloins with a brine and cure.
I’d recommend using the Country Brown Sugar Cure and it is definitely the most popular one to use too. That is a ham cure as well. If you do want to try a bacon cure, the most popular bacon cure is Blue Ribbon Maple Bacon.
If you want to use a cover brine, just use 1lb of cure per 1 gallon of water to submerge and soak the tenderloin for 3-4 days in the refrigerator. At the end of 3-4 days, remove from the brine, rinse, and then you can proceed with smoking.
Or, you could inject the loins. With injecting, you would want to use 2 lb of Country Brown Cure per 1 gallon of water. You can inject 10% of the total weight of the meat into loins with the cure solution. So if you have 10 lb of tenderloin, inject them with 1 lb of water mixed with 3.2 ounces of cure. After injecting, simply hold overnight in the fridge and then you can smoke and cook it the next day. You should be fine to use the same process for either the ham or bacon cure.
Let us know if you have any more questions we can help with!