It seems like everyone has gone loco for coconut oil in the past year (including us). But what if you need a flaky homemade pie crust or you crave the richness of butter or maybe you just can’t stand that coconut flavor? Then you need to get cozy with lard and ghee.
Both of these traditional fats have been used for centuries and they are not as unhealthy as you might have been led to believe. Read on to learn how to best incorporate them into your home cooking routine.
Lard: Simply put, lard is pig fat. But kick any thoughts of processed hydrogenated lard to the curb, and instead go for pure lard that comes from pasture-raised animals with no added hormones or antibiotics.
Lard is excellent for frying and sautéing and it will seriously up your baking game. Plus it is free of trans fats and is high in oleic acid, a heart-healthy essential fatty acid. Ask your local pig farmer if they sell it, or grab a snazzy jar from the folks at Fatworks (find a store near you). Founder David Cole let us know that Fatworks will soon be introducing pasture-raised lamb fat and organic chicken fat (aka schmaltz) along with their duck fat and beef tallow.
Ghee: Used for centuries in Indian and ayurvedic cooking, ghee is simply clarified butter. That means it has all of the tasty benefits of butter, without any of the negatives of the milk solids. Ghee is lower in both lactose and casein (which many people have a hard time digesting) and it has a higher smoke point, while being rich in the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, and K-2 and CLA.
Buy a jar from Ancient Organics or Tin Star Foods, or get fancy with a jar of Tava Life vanilla bean ghee for your morning toast, or boost your immune system with ghee loaded with turmeric, ginger and black pepper from Pure Indian Foods.