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Lard?

p
pasuga Jun 18, 2011 03:33 AM

I'm in my 50s and have never cooked with it. Don't think I've ever seen it in a grocery store - but have never looked for it. Just found a recipe I want to try that calls for it. (In one of the Two Fat Ladies' books.) Any ideas where to find it? I'm in Cambridge.

  1. chefematician Jun 18, 2011 03:56 AM

    Call Formaggio Kitchen or Savenor's. I've seen lard at both those spots, though not all the time.

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    Formaggio Kitchen
    244 Huron Ave, Cambridge, MA 02138

    1. m
      Madrid Jun 18, 2011 04:00 AM

      Sherman Market, union square, somerville, has had it in the past.

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      Sherman Market
      22 Union Square, Somerville, MA 02143

      1. MC Slim JB Jun 18, 2011 06:17 AM

        I don't think lard is that hard to find these days. You will find it in most supermarkets near the butter. Easiest to find in markets that cater to our Latino community. Small bodega-type neighborhood markets will also carry it.

        http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

        3 Replies
        1. re: MC Slim JB
          itaunas Jun 18, 2011 06:31 AM

          If you are looking for industrial hydrogenated lard in a tub you will find the Goya product in those locations (hint Johnnie's foodmaster has a house brand which is a larger tub and sometimes cheaper). Its not as tasty or healthy as freshly rendered lard and definately not what you would use for baking (unless you are just substituting crisco). The above suggestions, particularly Sherman are good and some of the farmer's market and CSA meat vendors also offer pre-rendered lard. But if making pastry you should evaluate it before buying to make sure its fairly neutral, otherwise if you are going to fry carnitas it just doesn't matter that much. To make your own you can buy leaf lard sometimes at Blood farm and render it yourself (this will get you a nice neutral lard for pastries -- and the process of how you render it can also help). I have a year's supply in the freezer!

          1. re: itaunas
            hotoynoodle Jun 18, 2011 09:34 AM

            i have only found hydrogenated lard in supermarkets and ditto for small latin grocers.. it tastes awful.

            1. re: hotoynoodle
              itaunas Jun 18, 2011 10:00 AM

              Yup, in case I was clear my recommendation is to avoid the tub lard. I have made carnitas with it and in that case its much more neutral than the cuts of pork themselves, so it provides some mouthfeel without really affecting the taste. But when frying you can tell the difference. And sometimes cooking with Latino's they will insist that crisco is necessary for a recipe (or margarine for sweets) so its a direct substitute for crisco when you are learning a recipe.

              carnicerias and latin oriented supermarkets can provide you with tocino (not grasa) to render, but that will generally be back fat and definately not leaf lard. If its creamy white enough I have had some luck rendering fairly neutral back fat by separating into fractions. That is what I have in the freezer right now and it came from Puritan beef. Better overall for making sausage, but it can work.

        2. s
          skippy66 Jun 18, 2011 07:15 AM

          For the past year or so, I've been buying Stillman's leaf lard at the Acton Boxborough Farmers' Market. (http://www.abfarmersmarket.org/). I render it at home and then keep it in the freezer until I need it.

          There's a special June Market Day tomorrow from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm. if you are interested.

          1. i
            Isolda Jun 18, 2011 10:05 AM

            I've seen Snow Cap lard in a box near the butter in almost every supermarket I've been to. I have no idea of the quality, but I'm guessing it's not good because it has some nasty stuff in it (BHA, BHT, etc.)

            1 Reply
            1. re: Isolda
              j
              Jenny Ondioline Jun 18, 2011 12:09 PM

              In my experience, Snow Cap is the worst of a bad lot: not only pumped full of bad stuff for shelf-stability, it's also weirdly flavorless. Might as well use Crisco.

            2. hondodog Jun 18, 2011 11:23 AM

              Pete and Jen's (http://peteandjensbackyardbirds.com) has rendered leaf lard available for those not inclined to do their own rendering.

              1. p
                pasuga Jun 18, 2011 04:59 PM

                Thanks everyone!

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