Joe slaughtered one of the pigs yesterday. I took the hams and bacons down to Warsaw Meat Packing this morning to get them smoked and packed.
And now, I am rendering lard.
Last year I did it on top of the stove and got a good result. However, I think I have found an easier (more efficient) way to do it.
I read a book about pigs this year, and I was talking to Charleen and Joe, and both recommend rendering in the oven. And Charleen also gave me the idea of freezing the fat before putting it through the grinder. Joe did it this afternoon, and it worked great.
So, I have heard the temperature should be 350, 225, and 170. I have it at 170 at the moment. We'll see how it goes. If it seems like that temp won't do the trick, I will be up-ing the temp by 10 degrees until it works.
I plan to leave it overnight, and then finish up with the cracklings, straining, and putting in jars tomorrow morning.
I think this site has a decent set of instructions.
On another note, I went on a date with Cade today. First we took Sabrina to her first day of work at the pet store, had breakfast at McDonald's, took the hams and bacons to the smoking place (there was a sign in there that said "No Smoking" LOL, went to WalMart for freezer bags, and then to Lantz's. At the meat packing place, the Butterfly Man gave Cade a monarch to release. That was cool. And, at Lantz's, Cade and I shared a Sarsaparilla Soda. That was yummy.
Well, I need to get back to checking things off my list.