Monday, December 22

Fun With Fats: Rendering Lard

Seemingly ages ago now (sorry for the lack of posts - busy!!), I stopped at the Farm where we get our milk and eggs. As I was piling things on the counter, my eyes lit up. There was something wonderful in the freezer case that had never been there before - leaf lard!!

(For those of you who are not crazy foodies, lard is rendered pig fat. Leaf lard is considered the highest grade, and is excellent for frying and for making decadent, flaky baked goods like biscuits or pie crust. It doesn't have any "pork" taste to it - just a beautiful, neutral flavor and creaminess.)

The lady at the Farm was super nice about my excitement, and said that although she'd never used it personally, people had been asking so she started putting it out. Yay!! 

Photo from Caveman Keto site
Obviously, I snagged myself a package to play with. Since the only stuff previously available to me was the hydrogenated crap at the grocery store, I'd never had a chance to actually cook with lard, but I've been reading lots about it and couldn't wait to try. The Caveman Keto site was nice enough to have a very simple, well laid out tutorial on how to render lard. It smelled very yummy while melting down (a someone-has-a-roast-in-the-oven kind of smell), and was beautifully clear and rich when done. 

I stuck it in the fridge, and have been happily using it to cook potatoes (and a few other things) ever since. I have been amazed at how far it goes! A little goes a very long way, and cost-wise it comes in at less than coconut oil! It coats beautifully, is fully safe to cook at high temperatures with, and provides your body with a different range of nutrients than coconut oil, butter, or olive oil. I am very happy to have made this part of my cooking, and am keeping my fingers crossed that it continues to be available!

*Important Notes*
Please keep in mind that you should only use lard from pastured, organically raised (with or without official certification) pork. Toxins and other nasty things concentrate in fat - in both people and animals!! Fat from standard, commercially raised pigs will be chock full of nastiness you don't want to eat! 

Also, remember to check the label on any lard you see in the grocery store - if it has been hydrogenated (even partially hydrogenated) it is inedible! Horrifically bad for you - put it back down and walk away!

No comments:

Post a Comment