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How to render lard...and other things

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posted on Jun, 22 2011 @ 10:23 AM
I know all you health nuts just went Ewwww... but Lard is not as bad for you as you think... plus it has more uses than a replacement for shortening like soaps and detergents as well as a water proofing... lets face it in a SHTF ep, every calorie you get is good calories.... but it turns out that to we humans, animal fats are easier for us to digest and process... as long as we don't over do...

Remember too... I am no expert... there are as many ways to do this as people on the planet... so if you have a better way, easier, simpler... speak up... I love to learn new things... so with that said on to the lesson...


Lard is very useful for pie crusts and other baked goods. Used before the vegetable shortening, it lifts the dough without making it greasy. Donuts were originally boiled in lard. It’s also great for frying eggs and sauteing vegetables.

Method 1

Preheat oven to 250F. Place 1lb of pork fat in an ovenproof dish. Add enough cold water to partially cover. Put in oven (or over very low flame) for 40 minutes, or until fat has melted, stirring occasionally to prevent it from browning or sticking. Remove from oven and strain through a cheesecloth into a heat proof container. Set aside. When fat has set into a smooth white shortening, remove from water (if any left), cover and refrigerate. Will keep for 3 months.

Method 2

Dice pork fat. Remove any meat and skin. Place in heavy bottomed pan and cover with water. Boil slowly until fat has melted. If water evaporates, add more. Pork lard will cook itself until it burns, leaving a strong taste which is not good for cooking.

Strain through tight weaved stainless steel strainer. Put in fridge. Fat will rise and water and impurities will sink. Remove fat from water and dry with a towel. Keep refrigerated or frozen.

The left over Pork rinds are nice in small doses with sea salt. You will find you’ll make too many for any family to consume so feed to a pet dog, birds or chickens.


Schmaltz or poultry fat rendered with onions. It is ideal for baking or frying potatoes.

Method 1

3-4 cups raw chicken, duck, turkey fat and skins
1 medium onion, finely chopped

In a skillet over moderate heat, cook the chicken fat and skin pieces until the fat liquifies out and the solid pieces shrink and become golden
brown. Add the onion and cook until the skins and onion are very crisp and dark brown (but not burned). Remove from heat. Remove the crispy bits with a slotted spoon. Strain if necessary. Stir and let stand until cool, but still liquid. Pour into a glass jar or container and keep in the refrigerator or freezer. Will keep almost indefinitely.
Makes about 1 cup schmaltz.

The leftover crispy bits are called “griebenes,” and are the Jewish version of fried pork rind.

Method 2

Place about a cup’s worth of skin and fat, diced or ground small, in 2 cups of cold water. Bring to a boil, and simmer, stirring frequently, skimming as needed, until the water has been reduced by half. Strain into a clean glass container. Using a wide-mouthed pint jar is great, as you can see about how much fat you’ve rendered out. Place in fridge. When the fat as set, remove it from the liquid, place in whatever container in which you’ll be using, and freeze. The liquid is now chock-full of collagen from the fat and skin, and should be nicely jellied. You can use it when making stock; it adds body and protein. Not much flavor though.

Method 3

When you make a stock from left over chicken bones sometimes fat rises to the top. Simply peel off when hardened from refrigeration and save in a separate container in the fridge. Use very soon or render it further by cooking it over medium heat until it stops bubbling ie. the water content has evaporated. It will keep longer this way.


Suet is the fat from around the internal organs of a cow. It has nutritive properties that encouraged ancient peoples to prize it for fertility. It is used in foods such as Pemmican. The Fat from the rest of the beast is simply called tallow and is great for deep frying as it’s high saturated fat content makes it very stable.

Cut fat into small pieces. Render with or without added water. Since tallow has more saturated fat, you are less likely to burn it if not using water but cook on low heat and watch the process, it burns pretty quickly.

•You can cut the fat into strips and store in the freezer before you render.
•When rendering large amounts of fat, use a meat grinder, the minced fat will render quicker. Grind frozen fat or it will melt in the machine.
•Pre-measure the rendered fat you store in the freezer in 1/4 cup sized blocks so you know how much you have for a recipe.
•If you don’t want your house to smell like grease, render on a portable element or barbeque (with an extra element) outside.


You’ll need:
•Unsalted butter (organic if available)
• a large sieve
•4 sheets of cheesecloth or muslin
•a dry heavy-bottomed deep pot
•a clean dry pot to hold the finished ghee
•a clean glass jar with lid.

Melt the butter over low heat gradually in the heavy-bottomed pot. Do not stir.

Over low heat, cook until the butter is a clear golden liquid. It may bubble and foam may form on top which you’ll need to skim off and discard.

Remove from heat while the liquid is a clear gold. Any darker and it’s over cooked and not clean tasting.

Line the sieve with the 4 sheets of cheesecloth and place over the clean dry pot. While still hot, carefully strain the ghee through the cheesecloth-lined sieve into a clean, dry pot. Transfer the strained ghee carefully into the clean jar and shut tightly.

Ghee at room temperature looks semi-solid. It does not need to be refrigerated but always use a clean utensil to scoop out ghee for use.

Well there you go... and hopefully I just gave you knew meaning to the term Lard-ass...

posted on Jun, 22 2011 @ 10:47 AM
That was my secret survival tool....fat.

When tshtf, it will be in very high demand. You can turn lots of things into a satisfying meal as long as you have some fat on hand.

You'll be able to barter with it for the other stuff you need too.
edit on 22-6-2011 by 3dman7 because: sp.

posted on Jun, 22 2011 @ 10:52 AM
Nice OP, good survival info to have.

I will add some of my knowledge of lard making.

My family always cooked our lard, just the fat in an iron kettle, over a wood fire. When lard is finished cooking all of the diced pieces of fat should float to the top and be a golden brown color. It is important to get as much water cooked out of the fat as possible. The lard will stay more solid in warm weather and takes longer to turn rancid if all of the water is cooked off.

When the lard is finished, there will be no more wisps of steam coming from the surface of the cracklins' floating on top. At that point, we would pull the fire from under the kettle and dip the lard off into the lard press.

Lard press like we used

The lard press also doubled as a sausage stuffer by attaching the horn on the bottom.
edit on 22-6-2011 by butcherguy because: fixed link

posted on Jun, 22 2011 @ 02:27 PM
Great info.

Too many people overlook fat as an important necessity. Several vitamins are fat soluble only so without fat in your diet...SHTF or not...malnutrition is very real, even if caloric intake is good.

I grew up with a bacon grease jar next to the stove that was used about every meal. Matter of fact, there's one beside the stove now.

posted on Jun, 24 2011 @ 03:22 AM
As always a great post. You always seem to be very articulate and make it easy for those of us not so quick on the uptake. Thanks..

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