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The story of Lard and your Kitchen

Arthur Huxley - 15-02-2019

Even the name sounds old fashioned and rightly so. Lard is an ancient part of our cooking with a history going back thousands of years.

Until quite recently Lard fell out of favour with concerns of the high animal fat content. Now with greater understanding of how our diet can benefit from clarified animal fats, it is nice to see Lard once again starting to appearing in our kitchens.

Health

Staying with the health benefits for the moment, true Lard is simply rendered and clarified fine pork fat. It is lower in saturated fat than other animal fats like butter and is higher in the healthy mono saturated fats - much the same as Olive Oil.

Moreover, Lard in the natural form has none of the Transfats found in beef dripping, something that clearly should be avoided in our diet. And finally, Lard is high in vitamin D, adding to the total of impressive health benefits.

Your Kitchen

Now moving to the essential bit, the Epicurean side. Lard is relatively flavour neutral, great for the slow cooker, and perfect for recipes where you really don't want alternative flavours creeping in, say butter. And it's a knockout for pan frying, with a high smoke point of 180c so minimal "spitting" at your stove. Lard also makes wonderful pastry. Many Chefs would argue, better than butter.

...the But!

So far Lard is a winner, lovely to cook with on your stove, healthy and even the colour looks good, but.... there is always a but - with Lard it is essential it is made from the fat of pastured pigs without the toxins found in penned or caged pigs, fed on a diet of antibiotics and sundry pharmaceuticals.

The recipe to make your own Lard is simple, given that you have found the true Pork Fat. The recipe follows in this Blog. Nice to have a pot in the fridge !

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