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Saving Fat

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 

I notice people talking about saving chicken and bacon fat. First, how do you collect it and store it? next what do you use it for? 

post #2 of 20

Bacon fat I just pour into a small stainless bowl and put it in the fridge. I have done the same for chicken fat. Use it for frying, potatoes fried in chicken fat are great. Eggs too.

post #3 of 20

Chicken fat has to be rendered.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #4 of 20

Simply pour off bacon fat from the pan you cooked the bacon in.

 

Chicken/turkey fat can be claimed from stock or those times you use a defatting cup. Or you can pull/cut off fat from the whole bird, and put it in a pat with a little water. Heat it gently, let the water cook off and the fat will start rendering. You start with water to pre-render some of the fat so that it doesn't sputter and stick so much. Turn the pieces of fat as they cook so you get all the fat cooked out you can. Pour off that fat and save it. Some like to eat these cracklings as well with some salt and pepper. Gribenes I think they're called.

post #5 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by phatch View Post

Some like to eat these cracklings as well with some salt and pepper. Gribenes I think they're called.

 

Absolutely delicious. Chris Lehrer, from this forum, taught me how to do that. Lots of S&P. I didn't know the name, thanks for that. 

post #6 of 20

The joys of Schmaltz, pastry, dumplings. Beef dripping for yorkshire puds and a blob in the deep fryer for chips or spread on hot toast. 

post #7 of 20

Rendered chicken fat has many uses in my kitchen.

 

The first and major use is to sweat vegetables in for soup--obviously I'll be using a chicken stock as well.

 

The second major use is for roux.  A very light roux, but the absolute best for thickening gravies and sauces--again obviously chicken based.

 

Remember, all fats absorb odours and flavours.  Use this fact to your advantage.....

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post #8 of 20

I don't save chicken fat.  I have saved bacon fat but not often.  But I do save duck fat.  I render the fat slowly and remove from the fat very quickly and a little at a time so that it does not get a chance to cook or burn.  As soon as the fat melts I scoop it up.  I place it in small plastic containers, label and freeze. 

 

I almost always use rendered fat to cook potatoes in.  Par boil some small potatoes, and throw them in a pan with duck fat and herbs. 

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #9 of 20

I have a can of bacon drippings in the fridge.  My grandmothers used to just leave it out on the back of the stove.  It's a real mess if it gets knocked over so I chill mine.  Duck fat, goose fat and pork fat (all rendered) are delicious.

post #10 of 20

To render chicken or duck fat without burning it.. Put in a haeavy sauce pan add water an boil for a while . Then  strain let get cold and take fat off top. or punch a hole and let remaining water pour out. It should never be rendered without water on a direct flame.

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #11 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by chefedb View Post

To render chicken or duck fat without burning it.. Put in a haeavy sauce pan add water an boil for a while . Then  strain let get cold and take fat off top. or punch a hole and let remaining water pour out. It should never be rendered without water on a direct flame.

 

Never say never.  I put my duck breast in a cold pan on low heat.  As the fat starts to melt I immediately scoop it up.  This goes on for a good 15min.  Then I continue to cook the duck breast.  Who wants to eat a boiled duck breast anyway?

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #12 of 20

This is from my Gma Van...

Always pour a bit of bacon fat (she would say grease) in the frying pan before starting the meat (bacon, sausage).

This simple action will ensure that even cooking will take place.

I rarely save fat and just use a splash of veg oil and take things from there.

It does make a difference.

OBTW...why do I not save drippings?

I cover a sheet pan (cookie sheet with low sides) with foil and bake at 350, turning and rearrainging until perfectly cooked (a bit of "tooth" on the meat, the fat crisp and brown).

For some reason not enough fat left behind to bother with.

Why is this?

Water evaporation?

post #13 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Koukouvagia View Post

 

Never say never.  I put my duck breast in a cold pan on low heat.  As the fat starts to melt I immediately scoop it up.  This goes on for a good 15min.  Then I continue to cook the duck breast.  Who wants to eat a boiled duck breast anyway?

I prepare duck breasts in exactly the same way. IMO that's the best way to get a thin crispy golden brown skin on duck breast cooked just right. 

 

I also typically cook bacon the same way: in a dry cool pan, then over low heat, scoop out the fat as it renders. 


Edited by French Fries - 9/29/12 at 5:55pm
post #14 of 20

Commercially we try and remove excess fat first and render . We don't have time to scoop up fat for 15 minutes thats why we do it prior..

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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post #15 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by chefedb View Post

Commercially we try and remove excess fat first and render . We don't have time to scoop up fat for 15 minutes thats why we do it prior..

 

So what's the difference between excess fat and rendered fat???

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post #16 of 20

I NEVER toss bacon fat.  When I had a dog, a few spoonfuls drizzled over dry food was a treat for her.  It's the only think my grandmother used to fry her crab cakes in.  Try making REAL pop corn with bacon fat instead of oil.  Great for scrambled/fried eggs and hash browns (fried potatoes).  I never strain out the little bits after cooking bacon.  Just pour into a contain (with lid) and store in fridge.

 

Once made a big vat of chicken stock.  Bird musta been especially fatty, cuz ended up with a rather thick layer of "liquid gold" on top of stock once strained.  I just cooled it down... then into fridge till it solidified.  Scooped off solid fat and briefly simmered to cook away any left-over "water" then stored like bacon grease.

post #17 of 20

I freeze lumps of fresh chicken fat, tightly wrapped, until I have enough to render to make schmaltz. I learned from my mom to render the fat over a slow flame in a pot without water- just lots of sliced onion to flavor the fat. I suppose the onion provides some moisture, but we kept a close eye on it. In a home kitchen you can do that (unless your little brother runs away down the street and you forget to turn off the schmaltz fat, and come home to burnt gribenes....). I can see the wisdom of rendering it in water in a bustling, commercial setting though, and what's the harm? You can saute some onion in it later to flavor it if you like. We did the same with goose fat, but I remember only one occasion when we had enough duck fat to make it worthwhile to render it. 

 

I always have a jar of schmaltz in my fridge. Otherwise, I'm not home.

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post #18 of 20

An  essential component of the Argentinian dough for empanadas is the so called Grasa de Pella, which is beef fat boiled in milk with a bay leaf. The pieces of fat absorb the milk gently and the cracklings should not burn. The softened and rendered fat is then strained, cooled and reserved in the fridge. In many provinces they make bread with the cracklings (pan con chicharrones).

post #19 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Koukouvagia View Post

 

So what's the difference between excess fat and rendered fat???

 

They are the same thing: chefedb said they trim, then render the excess fat, rather than leave it in and then having to scoop it up. 

post #20 of 20

Rendered fat is usually pulled off the carcass before cooking put in a heavy pot and water is added then boiled  The fat actually eventually starts to fry and shen is strained .The pieces of fat is known as gribiness and eaten =like pork rinds are sprinkled with salt they are good

 

Fat retrieved from the pan while cooking is just melted fat, nothing wrong with it, but because the water in the rendered one retards browning or burning of the fa,t it is never bitter. Rendered is used in chopped chicken liver quite a bit. 

Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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Chef EdB
Over 50 years in food service business 35 as Ex Chef. Specializing in Volume upscale Catering both on and off premise .(former Exec. Chef in the largest on premise caterer in US  with 17 Million Dollars per year annual volume). 
      Well versed in all facets of Continental Cuisine...

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