Since we had two hogs butchered I decided to try rendering lard. I got this idea from a nurse at work. Tom thinks I am going “Little House on the Prairie” on him. So I asked Tom to ask the butcher to save 15# of lard for me. There was a miscommunication somewhere, and I ended up with 4 large bags of lard. Above is 1/4 of the lard I received. So yesterday I tried a crock pot rendering recipe. It is at http://robbwolf.com/ Here are the crackpots (one vintage and one new) full of cut up lard:
I was nauseated through this process and not interested in trying the cracklings. So they are going to be dog treats. The crock pot method made a big mess to clean up, so today I tried using an oven method. It is at http://www.foodnetwork.com/ Here is the pan full of cut up lard in the oven:
I seemed to get less lard, but it is better quality. And there was less mess. I was nauseated during this process too, so I think I am done rendering lard (plus I tried to burn my face). Tom says he will throw out the rest before a tragedy happens.
I always thought old recipes with lard were weird, especially the pie crust ones. But now I have come to realize that shortening is probably worse and supposedly well rendered lard does not taste piggy. Once I recover completely from the rendering experience, I will try cooking with it and decide for myself.