Fall Task: Rendering Lard

When the weather gets cold and I am running the cook stove, I also render lard. It used to be from our pigs; now I get it from my friend Josh, and keep some and return some rendered lard to Josh.

Last year Loyal rigged up this handy cutter. And both then and this year he chopped the lard for me

The cook stove is ideal as it is a large, low heat surface. So I can shift big, heavy kettles easily from hot to cooler spots as needed.

Most of the fat melts, but some remains solid. These bits are called cracklings. Ken’s mother gave us a crackling cookie recipe that is delicious. When the fat reached 255 degrees all the water has evaporated and the lard will keep and not go rancid quickly

While the lard is rendering I have sterilized jars and lids and placed them in the oven at low heat to dry and stay warm. The fat is strained, jars are filled, and lids placed. this year canning lids are hard to come by so I dug out some reusable ones for my jars. Once the cold weather returns we will do more!

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