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Boiling pork fat ( Making Lard)

 
steward
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So i am trying a method that is new to me.

I put about 4 pounds of ground up pork fat into a stainless steel pot.

I than added about 1 liter plus of water to the pot.

Than i added some thyme and rosemary.



I am now boiling the pork fat and i am wondering how long to boil it for? I had very little success looking on duck duck go for the answer.
Since the water will only boil at 212F it can go a few hours at least?

Anyone have any suggestions?
 
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Not to say it's the only way, but every time I've rendered lard, I've added a small amount of water (a cup or two for a few pounds of trimmings), and cooked low and slow until all the water boils off and the scraps are super crisp and fully rendered (can take a couple hours, I like doing it in a crock pot out on the porch, because it smells a bit). Then, after straining, if you want cleaner fat (will be pretty clean already), boil with a lot of water for ten minutes or so, and then let cool and harden for removal and storage.
 
jordan barton
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thank nick.

I am trying a new method this time. I always try to get white lard instead of slighly brown lard which has a smell to me. After I have cooked it for few hours I am going to strain it and than let it cool. Than once it has cooled I will put it in the freezer so they can separate. Water will freeze and the fat will harden on top I believe.


I cannot find where I read the way I am doing it. I believe my method is done commercially.

What I like about is it, I can leave it on the wood stove and do other things without worry of it getting over cooked or boiling to hot and becoming brown. This is especially important when there is not enough solar to use the crockpot..


Maybe no one makes their lard this way and I will just boil it for 3 hours or so. The fat pieces/cracklin are still white.
IMG_1468.JPG
what they looked like. still not cooked. The pieces are rosemary and thyme.
what they looked like. still not cooked. The pieces are rosemary and thyme.
 
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Interesting problem! Boiling always brings out some of the pure fat. No doubt you are stirring periodically.

I wonder: after boiling, will slow roasting bring out more?
 
steward
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I should probably open a new thread for this: do any of you make lard from beef fat? I guess it’s not called lard but tallow.

Would the process be the same?
 
Nick Williams
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Liv Smith wrote:I should probably open a new thread for this: do any of you make lard from beef fat? I guess it’s not called lard but tallow.

Would the process be the same?



Yeah, works for any of the animal fats. I prefer tallow over lard truth be told. Little more pleasant mouthfeel to me and a little bit firmer at room temperature.


Lamb fat is straight up funky tasting though. And I say that as someone that loves lamb, the rendered fat is not nice.
 
Liv Smith
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Now I have to ask: how do you guys eat the lard or tallow?

 
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I make bacon grease from fatty ends and pieces by microwaving. Moisture comes out first then pure fat. I let it settle down then pour the grease to a container. It is clean, white in color and keeps the bacon flavor. I usually use it for scrambled eggs.
 
jordan barton
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Liv Smith wrote:Now I have to ask: how do you guys eat the lard or tallow?



I use it almost anywhere i would use butter. I would eat it on bread but i haven't tried it. If i fried the bread in it I would eat it that way. I have yet to really bake with lard. I put it in some buttermilk biscuits i made recently.


After the lard/tallow is rendered I put it in wide mouth pint size mason jars and put them in the freezer. When i take one out I keep it on the counter with the lid on. I make sure to use it as soon as possible.
 
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Liv Smith wrote:Now I have to ask: how do you guys eat the lard or tallow?



If you're making a pie crust, use lard instead of any other fat. The crust will be flakier and with better flavor.  Any baked good, really -- biscuits (as mentioned), bread, ahh, maybe not sweet breads or cookies, unless the lard is really clean.
Use it in whatever Asian dish you're cooking instead of oil or butter.  The dish will have a more robust flavor.
Fry eggs in lard. Hash browns too.
Swipe a pan with lard before you fry up steaks, ham, cutlets, etc.
I think fried bread is much better than toast. Add some lard to a pan, get it hot but not smoking, lay in then turn over bread slices. Give it about 2 minutes on one side and flip it. If it's crispy around the edges or a bit brown great! give it less time on the 2nd side.
I would use it where ever you would normally use oil.

Keep the cracklings and add them to sauteed, boiled or however you're cooking vegetables. Add them to soups and stews. Sparingly, add a bit of salt and enjoy it as a snack with your beer.

Here's 10 things to do with bacon grease (essentially, lard).     https://www.wideopeneats.com/bacon-grease/  With a bonus #11 --a bacon-smelling candle!
 
pollinator
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jordan barton wrote:thank nick.

I am trying a new method this time. I always try to get white lard instead of slighly brown lard which has a smell to me. After I have cooked it for few hours I am going to strain it and than let it cool. Than once it has cooled I will put it in the freezer so they can separate. Water will freeze and the fat will harden on top I believe.


I cannot find where I read the way I am doing it. I believe my method is done commercially.

What I like about is it, I can leave it on the wood stove and do other things without worry of it getting over cooked or boiling to hot and becoming brown. This is especially important when there is not enough solar to use the crockpot..


Maybe no one makes their lard this way and I will just boil it for 3 hours or so. The fat pieces/cracklin are still white.



I make my lard this way (usually in the crockpot. Works great for getting snow-white stuff suitable for 1:1 replacement for butter. The crackling will still be soft. I often have the crockpot going 6-8h with the lid on on the back deck. I start with 2cm of water in the bottom of the crock. When the water has almost completely gone, and the liquid has gone from cloudy to clear, use a measuring cup and scoop it out through a strainer into a hot jar. Put a lid on right away and it will usually seal. Jars of lard or tallow that seal can be stored at room temp for a year or more with no ill effects.

After you get your snow-white lard, keep rendering down the crackling in the bottom of the crock. Let it get a bit crispy this time. It should go clear and all the water should be gone. Strain this for a slightly brown lard. Suitable for frying things (onions, meat, falafel, hand-cut hot chips, the world's your oyster), but not baking unless you're making savoury scones.

In my climate, an open quart jar of lard will go rancid in a couple months of being stored at room temperature. Tallow doesn't seem to go off. I usually use tallow for frying, 1 part tallow to 1 part olive oil, as I don't like the mouthfeel of pure tallow when it cools (makes amazing falafel and hot chips though). Falafel is one dish that actually benefits from being fried in sheep tallow if you happen to have some--right flavour profile to benefit from that muttony-ness.

Best of luck, everyone!
 
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How do you treat the fat prior to rendering it with this water method? Grind it, chop it, etc? Any guidelines you all can recommend on adding seasoning (if I were to try a lardo-style batch)?
 
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Here is the method that I use to render lard and it works well for me:
1. Grind about 5 lbs of fat chunks, or chop fine. This allows the fat to come out of the bits easier. The amount of fat used is very approximate. Depends on what you have on hand but for me it's usually lard from a half hog.
2. Heat in a stock pot with about 1 inch of water in the bottom.
3. Add about 1 Tbsp salt, preferably canning or kosher salt.
4. Heat gently until just bubbling. This will take a while. If you crank the heat on high it will boil faster but you'll start to flavor the fat quicker.
5. Start skimming oil as enough comes to the top. This first "cut" will have the least porky flavor and is good for sweet dishes like pies. I number my jars of lard so I know which is porkiest.
6. Keep skimming and numbering jars until there is just fat bits and very little water left.
7. Cook above boiling to crisp up the fat bits. Let it cool a little and pour through a metal colander. Let the fat bits air dry to crisp up more. These make good toppings for various savory dishes.
8. The fat from this last step is the porkiest because the fat browned in it. Let it settle since there seems to always be a little moisture and pork sludge in the bottom. Skim off the fat and store. The bottoms of this "cut" is the only thing I toss out.

I store my lard in the freezer but I don't think it's always necessary to do this if you use it up in a reasonable amount of time.
 
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I do something similar to Robin's method above but I use a heavy cast iron Dutch oven over a low fire. Something about the fire makes the taste richer somehow...or maybe I just really like fire! Also that last bit of fat and 'meat sludge' can be used to fatten up a sausage recipe made from really lean meat like venison or rabbit or you could make your favorite canine companion verrrry happy!
 
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The only thing I didn’t see mentioned is that I use my tallow for getting an excellent cure on my new cast iron cookware. I have no idea about smoke points and what’s recommended but tallow seems to leave a really good cure.
 
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jordan barton wrote: I always try to get white lard instead of slighly brown lard which has a smell to me.



If I’m remembering correctly, there are 3 different types of pork fat/lard, and only one is a pure white, less odorous variety. Leaf lard, I believe it’s called? Michelle Visser of Homely … Rested or something discusses it on her blog! I’ll see if I can find it…



I’m back. It’s Souly Rested. Ha. Anyway, check this out!! It’s great info.

https://soulyrested.com/2022/03/17/complete-guide-to-rendering-lard/
 
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