Friday, February 12, 2016

Hooray For Lard!

I love to make blackened ribeyes. I do them on a huge cast iron skillet outside on the grill so the smoke doesn't fill our house. I've used butter in the past as the substrate when I cook them, but recently I've discovered the glories of lard. This, in particular, convinced me.
When it comes to determining the stability of a fat, it’s all about chemistry. Saturated fats have single bonds between all the carbon molecules of the fatty acid chain and are therefore the most heat-stable. That’s because single bonds, when it comes to the fatty acid carbon chain, are relatively difficult to break.
Lard doesn't burn and doesn't break down under heat unless you really screw things up. I've yet to burn lard the way butter burns. I had one adventure a while back where I heated the skillet and when I put the butter in, it burst into flames immediately, coating the pan with ash and giving the steaks a charred flavor even though they weren't burned themselves.

Lard doesn't have that rich, milky flavor that butter has, but you can get that effect by putting a small pat of butter on top of the steak when you serve it.


Ribeyes cut from the bone awaiting blackening.


Jedi Master Ivyan said...


You might look into using ghee. It's a clarified butter which has a rather high smoking point.

IlĂ­on said...

My Southern grandmother used to eat lard sandwiches.