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What would you do with 1.5 cups of bacon fat?


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I tend to lose all self-control when I go to Sam's. The end result is that I now have a cup and a half of clean bacon fat that I don't know what to do with. So far the only thing that has occured to me is to fry some potatoes with it.

Thoughts?

Reach out your hand if your cup be empty. If your cup is full may it be again.

-- Robert Hunter & Jerry Garcia

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I tend to lose all self-control when I go to Sam's.  The end result is that I now have a cup and a half of clean bacon fat that I don't know what to do with.  So far the only thing that has occured to me is to fry some potatoes with it. 

Thoughts?

Use it when you make a roux where bacon flavour would be good - any gravy or stew etc.

Use it to make pastry for savoury pies instead of using butter or lard (I guess it is lard anyway, isn't it?).

Fry anything else - onion confit, eggs.

But I think you got it perfectly right with the potatoes idea!

Happy Feasting

Janet (a.k.a The Old Foodie)

My Blog "The Old Foodie" gives you a short food history story each weekday day, always with a historic recipe, and sometimes a historic menu.

My email address is: theoldfoodie@fastmail.fm

Anything is bearable if you can make a story out of it. N. Scott Momaday

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My dad's best friend Bill always made popcorn with bacon fat. Use it for frying or scrambling eggs. Saute green beans in it.

You don't need to use it all at once. It fridges very well!

Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"
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I tend to lose all self-control when I go to Sam's.  The end result is that I now have a cup and a half of clean bacon fat that I don't know what to do with.  So far the only thing that has occured to me is to fry some potatoes with it. 

Thoughts?

Can't think much of to do with anchovy past in this context even though I love anchovies.

You could, however make pork rillettes. Here's how:

1) get some decent lean pork. Probably about half a pound for your 11/2 cup fat. Cut into roughtly 1 inch square cubes.

2) marinate overnight in a paste/rub made up of thyme, sage, juniper berries, garlic and olive oil. Salt & pepper sparingly.This should be made into the paste/ rub with a mortar & pestle or, if you must with a food processor.

3) Next day heat up your pork fat in an oven proof container large enough to contain it & the marinated pork & marinade on the stove top until the fat just starts to show bubbles.

4) Place in a pre-heated 230 degree F. oven and let it gently cook for 3-4 hours. Check & adjust Salt & pepper if necessary after a couple of hours.

5) Its done when you can easily shred the fork pieces with a fork.

6) Shred it all to a very rough paste & place in a sealable jar. Put this in the warmest part of your fridge (or if you're lucky enough to have one a larder that keeps below 50 degrees F) Keep for a week before opening. (I can rarely wait that long, but it is better if you can.)

You will now have what the French call rillettes. Absolutely wonderful when spread on some good French bread & eaten with cornichons and a glass (or more) of decent red wine.

Normally these are made with goose or duck, but I think the pork variety are every bit as good and its far easier to get the ingredients.

Enjoy. Let me know what you think if you decide to try this.

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You can make up an excellent pot of pinto beans with bacon fat (or lard). Saute chopped onions in lard until glassy until glassy and pale golden. Add in pinto beans and water to cover the beans by two inches. Throw in some sliced serrano chiles and a mashed garlic clove, if you like. Simmer over low heat until beans are tender but not overcooked. Add water sparingly near the end so that you wind up with a nice final consistency--not too watery. Salt to taste. These will also make nice refried beans if you want to use some of them that way. You can also add a bottle of beer in the last hour or so of cooking for some excellent cowboy/charro type beans. Serve up a bowl with some chopped cilantro over the top and a fried egg, steam a corn tortilla and you have a nice lunch.

Cook up a mess of Southern greens or use the fat to make a great cornbread. (The fat is melted in preheat skillet or pan; then pour in the cornbread batter and pop in the oven.)

Can't think of a good tie in for the anchovy paste, but a good use for that separately is in stuffed eggs (mixed in the filling or squiggled over the top of the stuffed eggs) or in a Liptauer cheese spread. Or use it in a salsa verde to serve with meat or chicken.

Edited by ludja (log)

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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My father tells a story about his Aunt Marion who lived with them and who made everything with bacon fat. He came home one day to find his mother with a fully decorated cake smooshed into her face, crying. When asked, she managed to sob out "Aunt Marion baked a cake, I told her it tasted like bacon grease and she hit me with it!"

Wouldn't recommend baking with it, but how about a nice bagna cauda, substituting some of the fat with bacon grease, should set off those anchovies a treat.

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The first thing I thought of was oodles of wilted lettuce salad with hot bacon dressing. Of course, if all you have is the bacon fat, it would be without the crumbled bacon, but it would still be good.

(And I'm sure that bacon fat would make pre-packaged bacon bits taste a whole lot better.)

Marcia.

Don't forget what happened to the man who suddenly got everything he wanted...he lived happily ever after. -- Willy Wonka

eGullet foodblog

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I'd pan-fry some chicken thighs to go with those potatoes

Ktepi:

My loss of self control included the purchase of 20 lbs of chicken thighs :)

You could, however make pork rillettes. Here's how:

Dave:

Once the pork is shredded do I mix it back in with the fat or do I only use the fat during the cooking process?

You can make up an excellent pot of pinto beans with bacon fat (or lard).

Ludja:

I've never been a pinto bean fan. Black beans and cumin are another story...

Reach out your hand if your cup be empty. If your cup is full may it be again.

-- Robert Hunter & Jerry Garcia

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A cup and a half. That is what you are dealing with.

That is just a starter.

It keeps very well.

A tablespoon or two to start this, that or the other.

It keeps incredibly well in the fridge, and even better (think forever) in the freezer.

Dip in for anything that needs a kick. Yes, potatoes absotuley, but vegetable matter does very well with a bit of bacon fat.

Congratulations upon a start upon having a larder handy.

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...

Ludja:

I've never been a pinto bean fan.  Black beans and cumin are another story...

I don't mention this to try to sway you, only to relate my experience. I used to feel pretty blah about pinto beans as well until I had some very good ones in New Mexico and then started cooking my own from dry beans in a similar way to that I described above. They are so good this way I make them often and will just have them with, as mentioned, some garnishes or with sauteed greens and maybe some cheese on top. They have a wonderful earthy flavor that is completely different from the product warmed up from a can. (I"m not saying you haven't tried them this way, but for me, it has made a complete difference.)

It's true the bacon fat will keep for a very long time in the fridge so you can certainly spread the use out over a very long time. Excellent for frying eggs as well.

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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I happen to like green beans (or a combination of snap beans and "shellies" that is, mature but not dried beans) sautéed in bacon drippings then add 1/4 cup of water to which I have added a tablespoon of cider vinegar, cover tightly and allow to steam for 3-4 minutes, depending on the size of the beans. Then uncover, season with salt, pepper and other seasonings of your choice, occasionally I stir in some onion confit just prior to adding the liquid.

I like this mixed or served on top of steamed rice (sometimes leftover fried rice).

I serve it with smothered pork chops, with ham or roast chicken.

Edited by andiesenji (log)

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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I happen to like green beans (or a combination of snap beans and "shellies" that is, mature but not dried beans) sautéed in bacon drippings then add 1/4 cup of water to which I have added a tablespoon of cider vinegar, cover tightly and allow to steam for 3-4 minutes, depending on the size of the beans.  Then uncover, season with salt, pepper and other seasonings of your choice, occasionally I stir in some onion confit just prior to adding the liquid. 

I like this mixed or served on top of steamed rice (sometimes leftover fried rice). 

I serve it with smothered pork chops, with ham or roast chicken.

Thanks for sharing this; it sounds like an excellent treatment. I know this is similar to the treatment for southern greens but I've never cooked green beans this way. And adding in some fresh shell beans would be wonderful.

Edited by ludja (log)

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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Chicken/beef liver and onions fried in bacon fat.

Caramelized onion and cheese tart. Use the fat for the onions.

Do you have any cast iron pots and pans that need seasoning?

Use it to saute chopped cabbage and apples or diced winter squash with thyme and rosemary.

Make a mess of fried green tomatoes.

Brush a bit of the melted fat on shucked cobs of corn and grill.

Use it to create a roux for a pot of gumbo.

Shelley: Would you like some pie?

Gordon: MASSIVE, MASSIVE QUANTITIES AND A GLASS OF WATER, SWEETHEART. MY SOCKS ARE ON FIRE.

Twin Peaks

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My mom always used bacon fat for half the fat in her gingerbread. It certainly adds something. Pick a gingerbread recipe that's heavy on the ginger and molasses, though, or the bacon flavour will come through.

“Who loves a garden, loves a greenhouse too.” - William Cowper, The Task, Book Three

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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What about some smoky fishy chicken thighs?

Brown some skinless chicken thighs in a little bacon fat. Remove chicken to a plate. Into same pan, pour in a tin of anchovies (or less, depending on how much you like them) and a couple cloves of chopped garlic, and mash the anchovies.

Cook this for a minute or so. Add some sliced black olive and some sliced green olives, some capers, and a can of diced tomatoes in juice. Bring this to a boil and return thighs to sauce, cover and turn down to a simmer, until thighs are done, about 20 minutes or so. Uncover and add some balsamic vinegar and fresh chopped parsley, and simmer for about 5 more minutes, or until it is a nice thickish consistency. Adjust seasonings.

Serve it with steamed rice and more chopped fresh parsley. Really easy and even better the next day. Sometimes I make a large batch of this and freeze it for easy weeknight dinners.

"Reminds me of my of safari in Africa. Somebody forgot the corkscrew and for several days we had to live on nothing but food and water." W C Fields

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Dave:

Once the pork is shredded do I mix it back in with the fat or do I only use the fat during the cooking process?

Leave some of the fat in as you shred. You are looking for a rough spreadable consistency.

If it doesn't come together into a pastelike consistency add fat back in until it does. If you have the meat/fat ratio just right you'll use all the fat just as it gets nice & spreadable. Don't forget that it will stiffen up when cool.

Getting the ratio right is just a matter of practice. (believe me if you make this once you'll make it many times over) Doesn't alter the taste so err on the side of too much fat.

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what if you made some kind of croquette to fry in it, and then used the anchovy paste in that?  I could see possibly a mashed potato and anchovy croquette being in existence.

my mom makes a great grilled chicken - break down a whole chicken into halves, then rub all over with bacon grease - inside and out - sprinkle with paprika, dried oregano, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Grill on a medium fire - most tasty! Gets a crust from the grilling and all the spices.

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Dave:

Once the pork is shredded do I mix it back in with the fat or do I only use the fat during the cooking process?

Leave some of the fat in as you shred. You are looking for a rough spreadable consistency.

If it doesn't come together into a pastelike consistency add fat back in until it does. If you have the meat/fat ratio just right you'll use all the fat just as it gets nice & spreadable. Don't forget that it will stiffen up when cool.

Getting the ratio right is just a matter of practice. (believe me if you make this once you'll make it many times over) Doesn't alter the taste so err on the side of too much fat.

(Sigh) and to think I was hoping to make it to 30 before having my first heart attack ;)

So far all I've done is use it to make chili and fry up some potatoes

gallery_38254_2778_90267.jpg

They seemed to be cooking too fast at the edge before I could get them really nice and crusty in the center. Should I have used more fat?

Reach out your hand if your cup be empty. If your cup is full may it be again.

-- Robert Hunter & Jerry Garcia

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(Sigh) and to think I was hoping to make it to 30 before having my first heart attack ;)

So far all I've done is use it to make chili and fry up some potatoes

They seemed to be cooking too fast at the edge before I could get them really nice and crusty in the center.  Should I have used more fat?

More fat

Start slow

Smaller chunks

Did you warm up the potatoes in the fat, or warm up the fat first and then throw them in?

How high did you have the heat on the burner?

A lot of other questions :)

V

V

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