Last year we made a connection with a butcher’s business who works with a sustainable pork breeder. We pick up the skins and fat from this butcher and cut the fat away from the rind to begin the rendering process. I won’t go into the benefits of using lard in your food preparation because there are so many different opinions about lard. Our conclusion is that moderation is the key to healthy eating and we use lard for particular cooking needs. My goal of this post is to show you our process and assure you that any fried foods we make using our lard results in a tasteless fat that produces great tasting food!
Here is the fat cubed after it is separated from the rind.
Because of the volume of fat that we render, we cook it in a 300° oven, stirring frequently, until the fat has all turned to cracklings and they are all light brown. Stirring frequently is a must so that the fat does not stick and burn.
I strain the fat two times. The first straining eliminates the cracklings and the second straining through cheesecloth takes out any small particles left in the liquid fat. The end result is a pure white shortening similar in appearance to Crisco but oh so natural and so much better for you!