Making tallow again! A friend of ours brought me a mountain of beef fat, and bones. I think he went in with a couple other people he knows and got a quarter cow. I remember him asking me if we wanted to join in, but I just don’t have the room for it in our tiny little freezer space, but he knew I could use the fat and bones to make stuff. That pile of fat is about half what he brought, and that pile there weighs about 25 lbs. Yes, I weighed each bag! It all came in one giant garbage bag sized bag and my son had to help me carry it in. We plopped the bag into the sink, and the sink only held about half the bag. The other half was sprawled all over the counter like a floppy bean bag chair.
The other half is there in the stock pots, boiling away. I decided to use the wet method this time and I think it really cut the stinkies down a lot. I just finished my second melting of that first batch and my husband doesn’t even seem to realize I melted down a bunch of tallow. Last time I melted beef fat, I thought he was going to turn around and get a hotel room when he got home from work. He’s big on theatrics, so naturally his statement of, “Ugh! What’s that horrible smell?!” was accompanied with lots of gagging sounds, and choking gestures. Oh that man! lol
After that batch, I asked that Great Oracle Google if there was any way to cut down on the smell of rendering beef fat and learned that if you melt it a few times, it seems to get less smelly each time. So, we’ll see how that goes but so far so good.
The bones our friend brought were all in a single big bag, like the fat was. I went through and portioned it all off into separate grocery bags. I got 8, I think. Maybe 9 but I’m pretty sure it was 8. Each bag should get me about one stockpot’s worth, or roughly 3-4 quarts of broth. Most of that will go back to our friend, along with some of the soap I’ll make from the tallow. If I can make a decent batch of soap, he thinks he might be able to sell it at a Farmer’s Market thing he goes to. That would be cool.
Of course, having to cut down 50 lbs of frozen beef fat into meltable bits by hand yields blisters the size of Manhattan. I’m glad it’s all cut down now though because all I have to do is grab a couple bags and toss them into my pots. I need to work quickly though, as I’m cheating by utilizing our little storage closet that we have outside our unit, while the temperatures are so cold. My fridge and freezer just do not have the space for this kind of volume. Once those temps rise, if I still have any food stuffs out there, they’ll go bad and then the animals would try to get into there and … yeah, we just won’t go there, lol. Once the fat is melted though it’s pretty stable, so I’ll be busy the next few days.
I am going to have so much tallow to play with! Oh the soaps and balms I can make!