This cut of beef lies between the very tender short loin and the much tougher round. As would be expected, the meat cuts from the portion near the short loin are more tender than those closer to the round. Sirloin is usually cut into steaks or roasts. Bone removed, the cuts are referred to by the names of the three main muscles. Top sirloin is a continuation of the tender top loin muscle of the short loin. The tenderloin is part of the tenderest muscle (which also continues from the short loin) and the bottom sirloin, which is part of the same (less tender) sirloin tip muscle found in the round. The best-known bone-in sirloin steaks (in order of tenderness) are pinbone, flat bone, round bone and wedge bone.

From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.

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The Chef's Take: Grilled Sirloin Tips with Avocado from Tony Maws

Tony Maws knows the importance of staying fit. At 44, he has a six-year-old son and two of the Boston area's most popular restaurants, one fine dining, Craigie on Main, and one casual, The Kirkland Tap & Trotter.

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