Sunday, April 18, 2010

Madeline La Framboise

The Fifth Grade at Ferry does a special project each year: the Wax Museum. Students choose and research a historical figure and put together a verbal presentation that they then get to give dozens of times to other Ferry students and parents.

Our Miss Bela went off-list and presented Madeline La Framboise. She is an interesting figure from Mackinac Island and Grand Haven history. I'd tell you more, but why not get it from the furrier's mouth...

Saturday, April 10, 2010


So Karen has become a lard rendering maven, on her way to expert status. Here's the video that started us off:


Lard-the most misunderstood of fats.
Home Rendering: Zarela’s Home Rendered Lard
Start with unsalted, frozen lard. We get ours from Creswick Farms, where it is called leaf lard. Cut it into small cubes. Can do this in the oven, but on the stove top you can see the three stages.
  • Clear - very white and clear,good for anything you would use butter for, even frosting.
  • Yellow (amarilla) - uses for making breads or non-delicate uses of oil and butter.
  • Asiento - can spread on tortillas, or use with savory dishes. Has more of a pork flavor.
Cube into 1/2 in size. Be sure to carefully trim any remaining meat if you're doing this for baking. Add to pan. 15 to 20 min, then pour off fat slowly. (Helps to have someone else.) We use a 7-8 setting on the electric range (medium high). It's a judgment call when to pour off, we're still experimenting. You can always pour off more frequently and then combine by color.
Use a strainer or slotted spoon to return any cracklings to the pan. Return to the stove for the second stage. After about 15 min more, pour off separately.
Return to the stove. The bits of lard left will form pork rinds or cracklings - chicharrones. When these turn golden brown and are not reducing anymore, pour off the third stage of lard. This is the stage with the strongest smell, and if you’re not interested in the chicharrones or asiento lard, you can skip it.
2 pounds of lard gives about a pint of clear and a pint of amarillo. And close to a pint of asiento, if you keep going.

- Dairy/Soy/Nut free

2 1/4 tsp yeast
3 cups bread flour
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 tsp salt
1 c warm oat bran milk to avoid dairy/soy allergy. (2/3 warm milk 1/3 c warm water if not)
3 Tbs lard ( I did a bit more)

Make the dough, raise once. (We use bread machine on dough mode.)

1/4 c sugar
2 Tbs cinnamon
1/3 c olive oil or melted lard

Roll dough out to about 16"x12" rectangle. Cover with oil or melted lard. Spread cinnamon mixture evenly. Roll up to make a 16" tube. Slice in 1.5" wide slices to make rolls. Raise a second time in roll form. Bake at 350 degrees 20 to 25 minutes (stay close to oven at 20 minutes)

1/2 cup of room temp lard whipped until almost twice its size.
2 cups confectioners sugar (or more to taste) added slowly, while whipping at slow to medium speed
3 tsp of Vanilla

If your frosting is too thick, add oat milk, a tablespoon at a time, and whip thoroughly in. Adjust sugar to taste. Karen is willing to go up to 4 tsp vanilla (or more to taste) and a tsp of imitation almond extract. (Imitation to avoid nut allergies.)

Or you can make a drizzle kind of frosting with just oat milk, confectioners sugar and vanilla.