Making tallow – Fat, fried in fat, with extra fat.

Can you ever get enough of  those long chain organic acids, the essential ingredient in any recipe. Not just any fat but the highest quality fat that you can lay your hands on. Fat is not just the ideal medium to carry flavor but also many vitamins are consumed through fat. So what can I say, fat can be a healthy choice.

There does seem to be a lot of discussion around on the benefits of the traditional unadulterated animal fat as being a better alternative to manufactured grain based, partially hydrogenated, oils. My personal rule of thumb is the less manufactured a food ingredient the more suitable it will be for food and more importantly flavor. Suet is the beef organ fat surrounding the kidneys, it is a long chain fat whose chains are 17 carbon atoms long (according to Wikipedia). It which can be melted  or rendered down to tallow which is a clean white solid fat at room temperature.

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Sri Lankan Chicken Curry Recipe

The greatest asian contribution to my eating habits would have to be curry. Easy to throw together, although they can use a lot of spices, and slow cook like a stew or casserole. Then so many variations on a theme, from a vindaloo to rangdang, green Thai to Sri Lankan coconut. A quick check of my cookbook collection would show that I have more dedicated to curry than any other category of food. The good news is the leftovers freeze well and often taste even better after reheating. Also being a stew type of dish work well with cheaper cuts of meat.

And if you love chillies the spiciness is easily adjusted to your own personal pain tolerance. For me the ideal amount results in all the pores on your face open at once and getting that pumped up on dopamine feeling where your head is floating above your shoulders.

I have to admit that when I was growing up, and despite several years living in south east asia, I didn’t like curry. I have spoken to numerous people that say the same thing, that as a kid didn’t eat curry and as an adult love it. So other than for breakfast, I now love it. So this is one from Sri Lanka  that I have made several times.

Like all curries a collection of spices is needed, some which require an expedition to the asian / Indian importer. The most difficult to find of these was the fenugreek which is optional but worth including, most of the others were from a local supermarket. [Read more…]