I attended a fat rendering event last Saturday, hosted by the Eugene, Oregon chapter of the Weston A. Price Foundation. Some chapter members had lots of beef, lamb and pork fat accumulating in their freezers, so they planned this fun event to educate us all and share the abundance.
Why render fat? For one, it is frugal – you use up every last bit of the animal. Second, if the animal is healthy and raised naturally, this healthy saturated fat is good for you. Hard to believe?
Ann Marie @ Cheeseslave points out the benefits of stable saturated fats like these, just a few of which are: enhancing the immune system, providing energy and structural integrity to cells, and build and strengthen bones and teeth. Read more at the Weston A. Price Foundation: Confused about Fats?
Ann Marie also explains, “Lard is the rendered fat from pigs. Tallow is the rendered fat from cows, sheep and bison.” Be sure to visit Ann Marie’s blog to see an easy explanation of how to do this – using the crockpot or stovetop.
And now, some more about the event along with pictures. Enjoy!
The Eugene Weston A. Price Foundation chapter leader, Lisa, and Teri Sue (who opened her home for the event) welcomed us all. After some introductions, Lisa explained the pretty simple process of rendering fat using the stovetop and the crockpot. Then we got to work, though others worked much harder than I did.
Meet Gina and Kelly (not Kelly the Kitchen Kop, which will make sense in a little bit). I know Kelly from Facebook – she’s a regular traditional food blog reader with an amazing health story! And Gina wrote an awesome review for the Schwarzbein Principle book awhile back at Kelly the Kitchen Kop‘s blog.
And here’s Jami. We’ve been friends a long time. She lives nearby to me; we made a day of our trip to Eugene for this event. We left early so we could go to Trader Joe’s and Glorybee. Only we never made it to Glorybee because we decided to go out to lunch at Cafe Yumm. I had a wild salmon burger; it was really good. Jami ordered a rice bowl.
I’m only showing you this picture because I want a Dutch oven so bad.
You need to pretty consistently stir the pieces of fat in the pan, to keep any from sticking which will prevent the tallow (or lard) from being released.
After awhile, the “liquid gold” tallow or lard begins to accumulate.
When there was enough of it, Lisa began filling our jars. There’s a little strainer tucked inside the wide mouth funnel to strain out any crunchy bits.
Now meet Marianne (from Prepare to Eat) and her sweet baby girl. There was another sweet baby girl at the event, too. What cuties! Every time I see babies, I long for more – even though I’m very content with the blessed life I have now. Talking with Marianne’s baby is: our host, Teri Sue, and Amy.
This is Marianne, her sweet baby Penny (Penelope), and me. I really enjoyed the day – meeting new friends, connecting in real life with internet friends, and learning more about traditional food. Edit: Marianne blogged about this, too! And she included a picture of Sarah, another blogger who was there.