Friend: Hey what are you doing today?
Me: Rendering beef tallow from a cow that was butchered.
Extremely long awkward pause.
Friend: What in the world do you do with beef tallow?
Me: Use it for frying, making soap and candles. I plain on using this batch to make some candles.
Friend: When the zombies invade, I’m coming to live with you.
We are very much trying to learn new skills and ways to make or do things ourselves. Less we depend on a store the better off we are.
Tallow is basically the same thing as lard, only it comes from a cow instead of a pig. Tallow is an old fashion type of fat. Very healthy alternative to vegetable shortening and canola oil. Tallow is very stable at high temperatures.
Excellent source of vitamins B6, B12, K2, niacin, iron, riboflavin, potassium, phosphorous and selenium.
Our ancestors knew the benefits from using tallow and didn’t waste anything.
How to Render Tallow
I had an 5 pound bag of beef fat
crock pot (I actually used two crackpots and divided the beef fat between the two)
cheesecloth, any old cotton dish towel
Place fat in crock pot. Set on low and cook for 8 hours. After the first 3 hours I start to stir and break down the fat. Usually stir every couple of hours after that.
After 8 hours pour the fat with the liquid into a lined strainer.
Strain as much of the liquid out as possible. Take the large pieces and give them to your chickens. They will love you for this treat.
Pour the strained liquid into canning jars and let cool. It will harden to a cream color. I keep a jar in the refrigerator ready to be used for cooking and freeze the rest.
Since I will be making candles with this batch of Beef Tallow I poured the liquid into a deep cast iron skillet. Be on the look out for the next post on how to make Tallow Emergency Candles.
Rendering Beef Tallow isn’t hard work at all just takes sometime to cook down. Hope you learned a great new skill. ENJOY!