Improved tallow rendering method

Answered on November 29, 2013
Created November 28, 2013 at 5:51 PM

Hi, I just produced totally clean, odorless tallow. It took overnight but just today's breakfast eggs convinced the whole family this is the way to do it. I did it in my 5 gallons stock pot. Discussions of the hows and whys at the end.

1) clean the suet (cut off bits of pancreas, pockets of blood, strips of meat), chop into one inch pieces, then grind in the food processor (if your fat is too soft, use partially frozen suet). This is not new.

2) place the ground suet in the pot and cover the suet with water. This is new, much more water (I also recommend the food processor, as opposed to just dicing with a knife. A meat grinder is fine too). Cook very slowly, barely to a boil. Mix occasionally. After a couple of hours, some of the bits will start sinking through the melted tallow. That is when it is done.

3) pour the content into very large salad bowls, through a large, fine-grained strainer. The first bowl had 2/3 tallow, 1/3 water. The second was 80% water. Let it sit overnight. I give the grist to a woman who has chickens, in exchange for eggs in spring.

4) in the morning, with a knife cut the solidified tallow on top of the bowls in four slices. Wash the underside of each tallow slice in cold water, because bits are clinging to it. Discard the water at the bottom of the bowl.

5) place all slices of tallow in a smaller bowl, place inside the large pot (some clean water at the bottom), and steam to melt again. Once melted, take out the bowl of melted tallow. You should be able to see how much impurity you have at the bottom. If you washed the tallow well, there should be nearly none. If you still have some

6) skim most of the tallow into clean jars. If you have a bottom, let the last bit of tallow in the bowl cool, then repeat step 4 (cut the tallow, wash underside, discard water).

The advantage is the triple cleaning of the impurities through cooking submerged tallow, first separation, washing, and second separation/washing. Wet rendering always produced higher quality tallow. It is a bit more work, of course.

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2 Answers



on November 29, 2013
at 04:10 AM

not really a lot, step 4-6 are fast. If you are going to produce cooking fat for one year… it is 1/10 of the work needed to make wine for the same period.



on November 28, 2013
at 08:59 PM

You're right — that's a *lot* of work.

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