Bear season is sort of right here, and I’m getting enthusiastic about it. As the primary massive recreation animal I ever killed, bears maintain a particular place in my coronary heart. And in my freezer: Bear meat is among the many tastiest in North America.
Within the meantime, I’ll make due looking mini-bears. Raccoons proceed to plague my neighbor’s dairy farm, and I’ll proceed to assist him with the issue. Raccoons are enjoyable to hunt as a result of you may make the most of them in 3 ways. Their pelts are comfortable and opulent, their meat is tasty, and their fats is plentiful.
These raccoons eat my neighbor’s grain shops every day, and I spotted as I used to be processing one which it had extra fats (comparatively) than any bear I’ve killed. So, why not strive rendering the fats and cooking with it?
Rendering fats from animals ends in oil that you should use for cooking or different makes use of. Bear grease is used for the flakiest biscuits and for waterproofing footwear. Lard is rendered pig fats, whereas tallow is rendered beef fats.
I’ve seen that fat that are jiggly on the animal are good for cooking. Bear, pork, and raccoon fats are all comfortable and jello-like if you find yourself butchering their meat, whereas deer and elk fats are a lot tougher and extra strong. Deer and elk fats ends in a waxier fats that isn’t scrumptious.
Rendering fats is straightforward and leaves you with oil that makes scrumptious browned meat, flaky pastries, and reportedly superior french fries.
Bears, raccoons, and even rock chucks (marmots), all produce fats that may be rendered. You’ll be shocked at how gentle these fat style. For those who’re doubtful about their taste, strive frying an egg first to check the flavour. You’ll discover it’s tasty, however in case you have any reservations, no less than you may deal with your gloves and boots with it.
The yield is superb, too. I took simply half the fats from one medium-sized raccoon and ended up with 16 oz of grease.
What You Want
- Fats from a bear, hog, raccoon, or rock chuck
- Espresso filter (non-obligatory)
What You Do
Minimize the fats free from the carcass as you course of your meat. It’s okay if the fats has some blood and meat included with it — these develop into the cracklings which can be extremely regarded snacks when sizzling and recent.
Minimize the fats into small-ish cubes, about an inch huge so it has loads of floor space.
Place the fats in a pot. Right here, I used a deep inventory pot to scale back splatter getting on my cooktop, however you should use any pot; a Dutch oven over a hearth is a well-liked alternative in looking camp.
Add somewhat water, sufficient to cowl the underside of the pot. The water helps distribute the warmth till among the oil comes out of the fats. The aim is to boil off the fats and go away solely oil.
Carry the fats and water to a boil, then cut back to a simmer. You need the water to evaporate, however you don’t need the oil to burn, so don’t rush it, simply let it simmer, stirring often.
The longer you are taking to render it, the whiter the oil will likely be, however even yellower oil tastes simply high quality. You would take half-hour or 3 hours. Right here I took a few half hour.
You’ll know the oil has all been rendered out of the fats when the cracklings are crispy. Take away it from warmth whereas the cracklings are golden brown in order that they don’t taint the oil with a burnt taste.
Canine love the cracklings, and also you’ll like them too — simply sprinkle somewhat salt or your favourite seasoning salt on them.
Fastidiously pour or spoon the oil by means of a colander right into a glass container. The oil is extraordinarily sizzling, so watch out. It’ll soften a plastic container at this level, so it’s greatest to make use of glass. At this level, you’re attempting to take away the crackling crumbs from the oil.
You’ll be able to pressure it a second time in case you like. I’ve put it by means of a espresso filter to essentially take away all particles, however you’ll need to perforate the filter with a pin to really let the oil by means of. I discover that the espresso filter step is just not needed.
I wish to retailer the oil in glass jars, however as soon as it’s cool sufficient you might preserve it in a plastic jar, too.
At room temperature, raccoon oil is just not fairly strong like coconut oil, so I preserve it within the fridge so I can use a knife to scoop it out for cooking. It turns white when cooled. Bear grease is firmer at room temperature. Each will separate into skinny oil on high and tougher lard-like fats on the backside of the jar over time, so simply combine it up earlier than use.
Raccoon-fried deer steaks come out of the pan with a deliciously-browned edge that makes you appear to be a a lot better cook dinner than utilizing vegetable oil. Use it anyplace you’d cook dinner with oil or Crisco for scrumptious outcomes.
is an avid hunter, and an more and more avid shooter. He strives to make scrumptious and easy recipes from the sport he kills. He makes a residing as an expert photographer, author, and images teacher. Try his work and he’d love to attach on Instagram: @outdoorslevi