Homemade Fat- Bacon and Brown Butter

The three fats in my kitchen.

I love fats, melted or otherwise. I know it’s not a politically-correct thing to say, but I know I’m not alone. Julia Child, whom I admire greatly, was known to say that we shouldn’t be afraid of fat, we should just know how to manage it better. I go through life with that mantra echoing in my head. I’ve been known to gnaw on a piece of crunchy, chewy fat from my steak and unlady-like as it sounds, I get a tremendous satisfaction from it and I’m not ashamed to say it either! In my own home, I have an pantry of fat products that I keep in jars in my refrigerator, my favorite being my bacon fat. It’s great to add a swirl of fat into my peanut oil when I’m frying chicken or french fries. I also use a little bacon fat in my salads- potato salad tastes so much better with a tiny bit of bacon fat in the dressing, and my frisee and bacon salad (frisee au lardon for those fluent in French) tastes unctious and worthy of main course status with a dribble of fat in the vinaigrette.

Having your own jar of fat isn’t hard to make. Every time I fry bacon, I simply save the leftover grease in the pan and strain it into a jar and keep it in the fridge. I’ve heard some folks keep it out but I feel better keeping it cold so it can keep longer. Brown butter is another little treasure in my larder(no pun intended). If you’ve ever melted butter, than the result you should know is clarified butter, and if you let this butter cook longer, you’ll notice the foamy solids will sink to the bottom and become brown. The butter will also turn lightly brown and the aroma is like toasted nuts. Take the butter off heat and pour it into a shallow metal container to cool or pour it straight into a jar. Brown butter is wonderful swirled into mashed potatoes, scrambled eggs or any place you normally put plain butter. The browned bits on the bottom are also worth saving. They add so much flavor to simple things like steamed fish. Or you can dip your crusty doughy french bread in it too!



Posted December 28, 2011

Thanks so much for the kind comments! Please visit often!

Leave a reply