Posted by Joanna Miller
Anyone who watches what they're paying for groceries knows that prices have gone up. The bans and rules related to Covid have caused massive disruptions in the Supply chain. The Biden administration, like others before, will do whatever puts large Big Ag companies ahead of smallholders, so we will have to pay the higher prices for less-than-excellent food.
And one thing that will skyrocket is cooking oil.
Did you know that food production itself is under attack?
What may not be obvious to the average consumer is that food production itself has been attacked in a number of ways. Legislation is in the works that will make things incredibly difficult for meat producers. The Colorado PAUSE Act (Initiative 16), one of the strangest pieces of legislation I've seen, requires animal producers to let their animals live at least 25% of their natural lifespan before slaughter.
As a poultry producer, I would have to let my birds live for two years before I could slaughter. Have you ever eaten a two year old chicken? They're delicious in the soup, but far too hard to fry. And the cost will be astronomical due to the amount of feed. Proponents of the bill say it is simply trying to make animal husbandry more humane. The truth is that it is becoming economically impossible to produce meat in Colorado.
Taking control of your food and financial sources is more important than ever
How Daisy saysThe nourishing forces do not seek to preserve natural resources, but to control them. We must do what we can to maintain as much control as possible over our kitchens, food sources, and finances. We also need to make sure that we are using the food we have as efficiently as possible.
Cooking oil In particular, it will be a little more expensive due to the green energy policy. Put simply, using renewable energy sources means using vegetable oil to make biodiesel and other “clean” fuels. So we're going to burn substances that we could eat, which will drive prices up even further. Unfortunately, we have minimal control over what is going on in Washington regarding green energy.
Edible oil sources are worth a closer look
Sources of edible oil, particularly animal fats, are often wasted. These days, household frugality is becoming more important than ever. I made pigs, cows, goats and lambs fat and saved fat. When I lived in Texas, I went shopping in Food Town. In Food Town, pieces of pork fat are regularly wrapped in the meat section. I took it home to render myself. It's not complicated, but it takes a long time.
FREE PDF: 10 Best Books to Survive Food Shortages and Famine
The rendering consists of cutting the meat into small pieces, adding a little water to the pan to avoid sticking, and melting it at a very low temperature. I've always used cast iron because it heats up evenly. Once everything has melted (usually 8 to 10 hours later), pour the liquid through a coffee filter to draw out solids and let it cool. The solids, also known as beef or pork crackling, are either delicious on their own or tossed into a soup.
What if I don't breed my own meat or don't have a neighbor to buy it from?
I very rarely buy meat in the store these days. We either raise our meat ourselves or buy it from friends. However, this is not realistic for most people. If you live in an urban or suburban setting, it is best to buy half a cow or a quarter of a cow at a time. You could get a pig, goat, or lamb too, but beef is usually the cheapest.
Most of the people on this website know the importance of saving food. Over time, however, I firmly believe that maintaining personal relationships with local grocery stores will be more important than ever for city dwellers. Sites like eatWILD can point you to organic and specialty suppliers in your area. You can also find a custom meat processor near you and ask about buying a beef side. If you can't get specialty meats, this is usually an excellent deal.
It took me some time to learn about the different cuts of meat in each animal. Many cuts of meat contain quite a bit of fat. You can crop these and render them as needed. When you buy a pig, you can ask the butcher to separate the lard. The lard is the snow lard suitable for baked goods and only comes from a certain part of the pig. However, any fat can be rendered and used.
Here are some tips to help you render and use fat in cooking
Fat from cows, goats, and sheep is called sebum and has a much stronger taste. I used beef tallow to cut pastries for meat pies because the flavors go well together. Goat and sheep sebum has such a strong taste that it overpowers other foods. However, it is still suitable for browning meat or greasing pans when something savory is being cooked. Filtered lard or sebum will stay in the refrigerator for about a month (depending on how well you filtered it). Otherwise, you can freeze it.
This isn't a gourmet cooking oil, but it's a good substitute for things like canola oil or crisco. You know the cheap oils that won't be so cheap any longer. (Aka, the foods we take for granted.) Here are some pictures of fat that I rendered from one of my lambs. In the first two pictures yYou can see that it is quite brown and hard even at room temperature. The third picture shows how I filter it. I just put a coffee filter on the glass with a screw tape and slowly pour it in. It can get a little messy, but it works pretty well. That sebum has been in my fridge for almost two months because the filter removed most of the debris.
If you're cooking a fat roast, you can let the liquid cool, remove some fat, melt the fat on its own, and then filter. This fat does not last long in the refrigerator, but is suitable for browning meat or vegetables. It also makes a nutritious snack for dogs and chickens.
You can use fat in all sorts of things. For those who work outside in cold weather, fat is an essential part of our diet. As William Cobbett said in his self-sufficiency classic Cottage economy"Your bacon flakes. . . will do ten thousand times more than any Methodist pastor. . . to make you happy not only in this world but also in the world to come. "
Are you doing what you can to become more self-sufficient when it comes to food?
I firmly believe that producing your own food will be more important than ever. But we also have to use what we already have with care. Check out this article on using the whole animal for more ideas.
What have you done to increase your food production? Do you have any tips on using certain foods that are often wasted? Is there anything you would like to learn in order to become more self-sufficient? Let us know in the comments below!
Source: The Organic Prepper
Joanna has been teaching three children at home since 2012. In 2014 she moved to the High Plains of Colorado. She and her children started a small homestead, worked in the garden, and raised chickens for eggs and meat. One animal led to another, and these days they have cattle guard dogs, chickens, geese, ducks, alpacas, goats, pigs, and a very spoiled cat.