Liquid Gold: Beef Fat/Tallow
How much do you spend on oils for your home? The average US household spends $117 per year in 2021 - before inflation. The 2022 price hasn't been published but in 2022, Vegetable Oil soured to 152% price increase. Far outpacing inflation. That estimated $177 per year - and that's average, not our Southwestern need to fry things!
If you buy a whole beef from Barnard Beef, you can get the leaf fat and make liquid Gold beef tallow at home. It's way easier than I thought and wanted to experiment. Here is the background and info - stay with me friends, this was a learning process for me.
Background: I'm highly allergic to soybean oil. I know people worry about hormones in cattle, but a soy latte has a ton more hormones than a steak. "I don't drink soy lattes, I'm Texan" is what you are thinking... do you eat French Fries, Ranch Dressing, Mayo, Fried Chicken? Most all of that is soybean oil. I'm no fun to eat at a restaurant with because I'll either spend 2 hours calling for safe restaurants or eat dry lettuce and cry in front of you. So we buy super expensive olive oil because it has less chance to be mixed with soy oil. That's tough on the budget during inflation and wanted to share with you my solution to cut back.
Beef Tallow/Leaf Fat
Beef Tallow: I'm not Google but if you Google beef tallow, you'll find lots of reasons Beef Fat is excellent for cooking - let's of the bad saturated and more vitamins. I'll let you do the deep dive on nutrition but remember the old McDonald's fries that we all loved - beef fat. Do you enjoy Bush's Chicken - beef fat.
Leaf Fat: You want to use leaf fat and not discarded fat from cuts because the beef slivers would make the fat go rancid quicker. Leaf fat is the fat around the organs and doesn't have chunks of beef muscle around it so it's pretty clean.
All I did was take my large vacuum sealed bag of fat and chop it into chunks then put it in the crock pot. I let it cook overnight and then strained off any large chunks left - it was almost like a casing that just didn't dissolve. I was going for super easy this time and not perfection so I probably wasted some and you could make more with a little prep work.
Then I let it cool most of the day so I could let things cool down and solidify so the chunks I didn't catch would drop the bottom.
Then mid afternoon, I pushed the hard white fat on one side and scraped anything at the bottom off and turned it back on.
After dinner, I used clean Mason jars, a strained with a coffee filter and a measuring cup to drip and strain into jars. (Cheesecloth was suggested and I'd do that next time but I live in the middle of no where so I did what I could.)
2/3 of the leaf fat from a single animal made 9 huge Mason jars of beef fat that is estimated to last my family 6 months cooking dinner at home every night - we dont fry much because we got away from fried when I was having reactions.
What else can you do with leaf fat?
Soap (Coming soon to the store)
Lotion (I don't know about this one personally - I'm all into this business but I don't know if I want to WEAR it)
What are steak candles? So glad you asked! They are Mason jars filled with garlic, salt, pepper and fresh herbs - Thyme this time because that's what I have on hard but usually Rosemary and Thyme.
I put the items above in a jar and then poured the fat over it and put it in the frig. Once the fat has had some time to draw up the flavors, I'll use it on a steak and it's amazing.
Next I want to try smoking the tallow in a smoker (or cold smoker if I can find one) and see if smoked tallow can be made because garlic smoked cooking oil sounds AMAZING!
AS ALWAYS, PLEASE LIKE/SHARE/COMMENT!