Bone Broth and Lard

bone broth and lard in freezer

Here at BOTL Farm, our commitment to nose-to-tail utilization of the animals we raise means that we need to find a home for lots of bones and fat. Most farmers leave some or all of these less-desirable parts at the slaughterhouse to be disposed of. We take everything possible with us, so over the years we’ve developed ways and means of using the non-prime cuts.

We’re happy to have access to a cooperative commercial kitchen facility nearby, CLiCK Willimantic, so that we can (legally and safely) transform these non-prime cuts into delicious and nutritious products such as bone broth and lard. Kitchen processing work days are long, hot, time-consuming, and maybe not everyone’s idea of a good time. We’re fortunate to have people like our friend Molly in our lives, who voluntarily spends all day long working and packing products at the commercial kitchen with us.

Bone Broth (aka Stock)

We often debate the difference between stock, broth, and bone broth but haven’t found a satisfactory answer. What we know is that we take bones and heads from our animals, add water, and vigorously boil for hours. The resulting thing we normally call bone broth for simplicity, but it is worlds away from the stuff in a can in grocery stores.

We make several types of bone broth: chicken, pork, bacon, goat, and lamb. They are all unseasoned and besides the bacon, completely unsalted.

Meat and bone in steam kettle

Lard

Lard may not have the best reputation right now, but history shows that people have raised heritage breed pigs and selected them for fat production and quality for centuries. Such that lard has a long history of being a primary cooking and baking source of fat. We also like to point out that for New England locavores, it’s the only versatile fat source available!

rendering lard in tilt skillet

Further, we raise part-Mangalitsa pigs specifically because the breed is world-renowned for fat quality and taste. Being true to the history of raising pigs, we view the fat on our pigs as a great resource and opportunity to make nutritious, delicious, local fats. So, we go to our local cooperative commercial kitchen and do the long, boring step of rendering the fat into ready-to-use lard.

Lard is our go-to cooking fat in the kitchen. Cooking eggs, use lard. Sautéing veggies, use lard. Deep or shallow frying, use lard. When we need to lube a pan, dish, baking sheet, etc., use lard. Old-fashioned stove-made popcorn, use lard. Recipes that call for any oil, substitute lard. Need butter for a recipe? Try lard.
Bakers love lard! Pie crusts, biscuits, cookies… yum!
For a real treat just try some warm lard, a little salt, and some nice bread. You may never ask for butter on your toast again.
Don’t want to eat it? Try making soaps, candles, lip balm, or just season cast iron dishes. Lard. It’s your local fat source.

Last Updated on 2023-02-23

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