Did I do my tallow right?
I bought some lamb fat from my local butcher and decided to make my first ever batch of tallow! :-)
I rinsed off the tallow, cut off any meaty parts that were left on it, and cut it into small pieces. Something that I found odd was that there were blood vessels in parts of the fat. I cut most of them off, but some still remained.
I cooked it on low heat and it all rendered down fairly quickly. I left it for ten minutes and my fire alarm went off. The smaller fat pieces had turned really dark and were burning, while the fat (tallow) was smoking. Is it still ok to use, or did I ruin it?
At the end, I strained it twice and got most of the debris out. It's now cooling off and is a golden brown/gold color.
Did I do this right?
The cutting out the meaty bits and chopping it into small pieces part was correct.
Sounds like the heat wasn't as low as you might have thought. Does it taste burnt? If not, I'd still use it, but either try a wet render next time, or back off on the heat. It should take a long-ass time (that's a scientific measure of time if I've ever heard of it) to dry render. You should get a bit stir crazy and be really tired of standing in the kitchen by the time it's done. At least that's been my experience.
Wet rendering, on the other hand, takes several forevers longer and should only be done in a crock pot while you're out camping/hiking/biking/practicing karate in the garage with your step brother.
It does smell burnt now that it is cooled off.
I cut the lamb into small chunks, and put it on low heat (the lowest my stove would go). I stirred it every couple of minutes for the first half hour and then every five after that. It rendered down pretty fast, maybe in 90 minutes. I used lamb fat, by the way.
Don't think i'll be using it. :'(
Was it slimy fat of hard fat? Are you sure it's too cooked?
What do you mean by hard or slimy fat? When I bought it, it was a solid hard mass that I cut up. It melted pretty quickly and I stirred it every so often. My fire alarm started going off and when I opened the lid to the pot the fat that was being cooked in the melted fat was pure brown, not black though. I decided to stop it and just strained it. They were pretty crispy chunks.
I put the tallow in a container and stored it in the fridge. It looks like a pale white and smells somewhat burnt.
Yeah, cool. The hard fat is what you want. Nobody told me that and my first try at tallow was an awful mess.
I doubt it's oxidized enough to have a negative health impact in the short term. Unles you find the flavor disagreeable, I'd say use it up and make the next batch with lower heat. Overcooked tallow can't be nearly as bad as toasted nuts. And it gets cooked again in the pan anyway.
Pale white is also how mine looks.