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Dog biscuits and lard

I spent most of the weekend making liver biscuits for the puppy and rendering lard..

Jason’s parents raise pigs and cows so our meat comes straight from the farm to the butcher.  Kabric Beef in Plainville, IL does ours and then delivers it to the house. They not only do a great job but we get all the extras, like liver, tongue, hocks and of course FAT.

Jason’s mom taught me how to render our own lard.  If you’ve ever made home-made pie crust it turns out the best using lard.  Its not very hard to do.  The fat generally comes in big bags.  Cut it up into small chunks – maybe 1-2″ cubes.  Dump it into a BIG pot and let cook at a low heat.  The fat will start to melt and eventually there will be enough liquid to boil.  You will need to stir it occasionally. The fat chunks will melt and get smaller and then float to the top. This will take several hours.  Eventually all the water that was in the fat will boil away.  Once that happens, the leftover chunks will sink to the bottom of the pot.  These chunks are called “cracklin’s” and are pieces of meat and tissue that were trimmed along with the fat.  When the cracklin’s have sunk to the bottom of the pot, the lard is ready.  Strain it through cheesecloth and a metal collender  to get all the cracklin’ out.  Put the lard away in a cool place and it will stiffen up nice and white and creamy.  If your lard doesn’t stiffen up completely when cool, or it seems kinda runny, you probably just didn’t let it render long enough, and some water was left over.  You’ll know next time to wait longer.

The stores have to add other things to their lard.  When you make your own it just tastes and looks so much better than store-bought.

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Now for the rest of the extras I do mix a little liver in with the supper now and then but its ground up or I try to hide it so the kids don’t know its there. You know – ground up in the meatloaf and stuff like that. but the kids really don’t like it so the tongue, heart, and liver usually get ground up for the dog, He loves it, so I throw in an egg, some liver, peanut butter, and some flour then bake 20 minutes. This makes the best dog treats ever.

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