Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Beef Tallow

After a year or so hiatus, I'm back equipped with a 'proper' camera and some fancy settings. After trying out various low-carb-this and low-fat-that products to help my never ending quest for better health, a little internet research and experimentation has led me to try out living 'primal'. The in-depth fundamentals of the lifestyle can be found over at Mark's Daily Apple but I've been attempting to ease myself into it all with small changes. Though I'm not yet fully immersed, banishing bread and prohibiting pasta has significantly improved my digestion and already I'm experiencing higher energy levels.
Eating more meat is of course more expensive but using the leftovers can make this way of living more economical and less wasteful. The animal fat is a often discarded as unhealthy and high in saturated fat but as it turns out, saturated fat isn't what clogs up our arteries. So in my quest to produce less waste, I saved up around 500g of hard, waxy white beef fat from the fore rib. Here's how I rendered it down into beef tallow:

The fat itself had been in the freezer so I left it to defrost. Here it is before any prep:

Once fully defrosted, I painstakingly removed all the visible meat and chopped the fat into 1cm cubes then popped into a small stainless steel pan over a low heat:

Here is a picture of the gas underneath just to show how low it really was:

I kept the lid on to avoid the fat spitting and after half an hour, stirring occasionally, fat started to collect in the bottom of the pan:

Once there was enough to drain a little, I drained through kitchen cloth over a metal sieve and strained out all those little beefy crumbs:

After cooking for another half a hour, most of the fat had turned brown and crispy:

So I gave it one final strain and ended up with this much tallow:

Once cooled it turns opaque, white and hard like lard. It can be scooped out and used for frying or even whipped up with essential oils to make a body butter. Apparently it's the best fat for cooking the perfect crispy fries. And no food waste!

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