That Scottish blood runs deep in O Wise One and following Samhain tradition October 31 was the day of slaughter. The pigs went to butcher before the butcher shop closed down to process deer which starts next week here in Missouri.
The butcher was very generous with pig fat and sent me a whole 1/2 garbage bag of it. Already ground up and ready to render. As soon as I got it back we started the rendering process.
I continue melting and filling jars until I get to the bottom layer of fat with just enough liquid remaining to cover it. Once the remaining fat pieces start to brown I stop collecting liquid lard. I turned up the heat just a little and allowed the small amount that sinks to the bottom to brown completely and become crunchy then dip them out and run them through cheese cloth and put them on paper towels to drain.
These are cracklings which are nothing more than fried crunchy pieces of fat. These are a great addition to corn bread and was my father's favorite corn bread.
Once cool I put these in pint jars to be used in corn bread through out the year. They will go in the freezer.
The remaining lard that the cracklins were cooked in will be much darker than the first liquid lard that you collected. I put this darker lard in separate jars. It will taste a little more like meat and was what my mother used to melt and put on the top of her biscuits to make them nice and brown on top with just a hint of a meat taste.
I ended up with 18 quart jars of lard or 32 pounds to make soap with or use in baking. Also there were 8 jars of cracklins for cornbread making. In the picture above you can see the darker lard in the second jar from the left. Once the jars were cool I put on lids and all went into the freezer. The entire process took me a little over 14 hours from cooking to having jars completed. Then I let them cool overnight before freezing.
I will take them out as needed and let defrost for soap making. If I want to bake with it I put mine in the refrigerator.
Blessings from The Holler
The Canned Quilter