Beka To Basics

Real Food Cooking

Fat

Tallow and Lard

This week I bought meat directly from a farm for the first time in my life.  I also bought suet and pork back fat to make tallow and lard. I’ve used lard before, but always from bacon drippings, so I’ve only used it when I knew I wouldn’t mind a slight bacon flavor – like crackers! Back to the suet…

I didn’t realize that one order consisted of 8 pounds of suet.

You can’t just start cooking with it, you have to render it into tallow first.  After lots of internet searching I decided to try.  Suet is something else. Not quite butter like, not quite meat like, but it was relatively easy to cut up in chunks and grind in my food processor. At least I thought it was, until I almost killed the food processor grinding 8 pounds of fat.  Luckily, I think it will make it.

Into the crock pot (which will also recover from all the fat hopefully). A few hours later, it turned into this

Yummmm Crock Pot full of fat. Actually, it smells pretty strange and I’m glad I made the decision to render in the crock pot outside on my patio. Apparently that’s normal? And the smell goes away after it cools?

I’m letting it cool in a pan and tomorrow, I will be frying some potatoes and chicken wings in it!

(Which I hope is ok with all of the people coming over tomorrow. I guess I’ll find out when they get here…)

UPDATE:  The smell does subside as it cools.  It definitely has a tallow-y smell to it, but that’s ok.  It’s the way my grandma’s house used to smell. 🙂 Feels like home.

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