Sunday, January 24
tallow, oh my! what have i done?
*spoiler alert *warning* gross pics to follow
Seriously, I had an excess of fat, lots of beef fat. Ick. It makes me realise why I usually hate cooking meat. All that grease. Our carbon footprint at Chez Pan has been getting a bit more of a meat driven workout; the meat we have just started to buy is high quality and incredibly cost effective and can keep in the freezer for ages if vacuum packed. Our stsh has been eaten at a rather rapid rate - it must be all that meat deprivation thats been going on for quite a while in this normally vego household! It has to stop soon. She says drooling at the memory of a parmigiana.
Anyway, after another delivery of a fabulous beef rump by the Gnomes, I trimmed and portioned into into various cuts leaving me with a great pile of beef fat. Last time I did this the Gnomes were here and took the fat home for their chooks. This time no Gnomes. What to do with all that fat?
Compost it? nup
Feed it to the cat? nup
Bin it? ugh nup
So I bit the bullet and made some tallow. I just couldnt toss it. Tallow! Yikes. So I chopped it into small pieces, put it into a pan, covered with water and boiled it for about 30 minutes. Gross. Needin a shower right about now.Boiled meat stinks, the worst smell in the world I reckon and our kitchen fan is busted too! Double ick. I scooped out all the chunky, browned bits then i forgot to strain it and left it in the fridge to set hard.
When set, I cut the hard disk of fat in half and removed it from the pan. Underneath the layer of set tallow was a clear gelatinious layer and underneath that a layer or purplish sludge. dont ask! I washed the tallow under running water, rubbing off gently the jelly and the tiny fat balls and impurities that were on the undersides of the pieces.
I will probably ues it for some soap, beef tallow makes lovely big bubbled soap or some candles. What do you think? What to do with the leftover, very unappetising gristly,fatty meaty bits? Ive put them in the freezer to whizz up with bird seed to keep the native finches with a supply of fat which they find tricky to source mid-winter. Not my most favourite way to spend an afternoon but hey, that cow and its bits need some respecting right?