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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I'm sure this applies to just about any meat/fat rendering and it's long, but it covers the whole process & WTD with left overs..

I've been rendering some beef tallow the last few days and I have gotten very different results using the same method, just different batch of fat. The fat is primarily from prime cuts like tenderloin, prime rib and delmonico's - these are the big butcher throw-aways. I meticulously trim all the meat off and then slice the fat into thin slices. I have then tried the following methods to render -

Fat only renderings

-Boiling in water in a pot

-Microwave on high - in glass loaf pan

-Bake in large cake pan (9x13) at 300 - no water

-Bake in large cake pan (9x13) at 300 - w/ water

Meat/Fat Rendering

-Slow cooker on high with water (fat with meat trimmings)

After any of the above processes I filter through strainer & cool. I then look at the colors of the tallow and combine them together in 4 groups - white, slight yellow, light yellow, Everything else. I remove the hardened tallow from the container and scrape the bottom layer (which usually has fine particles in it) and boil and filter, cool - repeat.

I had a grease explosion during one rendering which happened while boiling grease with water. I think I had too much oil compared to water, like~ 1 gal to 2.5 gal oil - then explosion spewed a lot of oil out. I allowed to cool and there was still a good amount of water in the bottom...

My biggest problem now is when working with my 16qt stock pot with something like 1.5 gal water and 1 gal tallow. I bring to a boil and I often hear loud banging/popping noises coming from the pot (near the bottom I think). It also sometimes makes an "angry" sound like when you add frozen fries to really hot oil - but there is lots of water in the pot. It sometimes does this after like an hour of boiling - I turn off - add more water - turn back on and the noise starts again.

NOTE: I just took video and added a lid to the pot afterwards. Big mistake (the lid). The water that condenses inside the lid, drips back into the hot oil and makes the oil "sneeze" (explode from water super-heating in top oil layer & vaporizing w/ pressure causing an explosion (so I am guessing is the case). What I still can't understand is why this starts after cooling and adding more water.

-I'm wondering if there is a way to process the fat faster like with a salad shooter, slicer board (like for cutting onions/tomato slices), food processor (cool/cold fat first), or with the meat not trimmed off.

-Is there a way to heat/render to get the cleanest/whitest tallow?

-What is the best way to clean (boil) then filter the oil? (I'm looking for something as fine as a coffee filter, but sturdier and maybe larger)

Finally - meat scraps & broth uses

When working with the remaining fried /crisp fat and meat, I put in food processor to chop. I now have a good bit of fairly fat free/minimal fat meat and lots of broth (2.5-3 gal) I'm trying to figure out what to do with the meat and broth when I don't have an immediate use. I was thinking doggie treats by cooking rice with the broth, mixing with meat and cooking. IDK if I should paritally dehydrate the meat or what.
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