Lard, Crisco or butter?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Quiver0f10, Sep 12, 2004.

  1. Quiver0f10

    Quiver0f10 Well-Known Member

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    I thought I read somewhere that crisco isn't great for you but to use butter for baking can get VERY expensive fast. So, I was looking at lard at the store. It said it was made from lard and had preservatives, of course. Is lard "safe" to use in baking? Or am I better off sticking with butter? We do not eat margirine or any soy things.

    Thanks!
     
  2. southerngurl

    southerngurl le person Supporter

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    In my opinion - and my moms who is an RN- butter would be the most healthy of those. Likely the Crisco would be the worst, hydrogenated oils are terrible (and in almost everything). You can also use olive oil for baking almost always, it's not the greatest for crusts though. We buy the "mild flavor" olive oil in large 5 liter sized containers at walmart. We actually use it for everything (even deep frying) because my dad is allergic to other oils.

    http://psa-rising.com/eatingwell/transfats092003.htm
     

  3. Grandmotherbear

    Grandmotherbear Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Crisco is hydrogenated cottonseed oil and it's FULL of toxic chemical resides. Butter and Lard are both natural saturated fats, which aren't great for your cardiac health but which my reading leads me to believe is not that harmful in general if you get plenty of exercise...I would use butter where taste is important, but I have always undertood the best pie crusts to be made with lard. I try to use walnut or canola oil because I don't know whether my dad and uncle's cardiac problems were the result of having scarlet/rheumatic fever in the prepenicillin days or whether they were genetically susceptible to saturated fats. There heart attacks were pre-cholestrerol screening days. But my pie crstsreally aren't that flaky, made with oil...
     
  4. Ann-NWIowa

    Ann-NWIowa Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I think it depends a bit on how much your family depends on your baked goods. If its daily, then you want to use the healthiest solution. If its an occasional once a week treat then whatever you use isn't going to matter much. I've always opted for butter, but now my husband is diabetic with out of sight cholesterol so its olive oil. The nurse recommeneded cannola oil but I've read very negative things about how its processed. Lard makes very light pie crusts. I like the butter flavored Crisco for cookies and since I don't bake that often anymore I don't worry about the health issues attributed to it. Its not like cakes and cookies are high on nutrition anyway.
     
  5. tinknal

    tinknal Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I render my own lard. Not hard if you raise a pig or know a pig farmer (most people who get hogs processed don't want the lard. You could probably get unrendered lard cheap from a locker plant
     
  6. HermitJohn

    HermitJohn Well-Known Member

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    Watch out for non-refrigerated lard sold in grocery stores. Its a hydrogenated saturated fat with preservatives added. Gotta be worst of the worst. It also doesnt necessarily act like the old timey type lard due to all the processing I guess. If you can find real lard that is just rendered pig fat, then you are better off. I doubt its still real good for you but at least its real lard rather than this plastic preserved stuff. If its refrigerated or frozen then its probably real lard.
     
  7. Terri

    Terri Singletree & Weight Loss & Permaculture Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    I use oil for most of my baking, and butter for pie crests. Oil actually works well for baking and frying, with the exception of pie crusts and butter cookies.
     
  8. BCR

    BCR Well-Known Member

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    We use real butter for eating/spreading. Olive oil, peanut oil and sesame oil are all used in cooking to varying degrees. I only own vegetable shortening (generic) to treat the cast iron pans and to use in a few soap recipes.

    One or the other of us tends to react (ahem, can't say how in polite company) to soy or margarine or other fake fats. "WOW!" chips have done is both in when eaten at a party and not knowing what they were. I shudder to think of them....
     
  9. BCR

    BCR Well-Known Member

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    I want to add that I occ. use the bacon fat from cooked bacon as well. I even save it in the fridge till I need it.
     
  10. Cyngbaeld

    Cyngbaeld In Remembrance Supporter

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    We use coconut oil, olive oil and butter and occasionally seseme oil for the flavor.
     
  11. foxpawz

    foxpawz Well-Known Member

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  12. Christiaan

    Christiaan Dutch Highlands Farm

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    We use peanut oil for frying, usually with some butter for added flavor. Olive oil without the butter. Real lard when we can find it for piecrusts. The local slaughter houses sell the pig fat to plastics manufactureres so we are out of luck with them. I render out all the chicken fat and skins, same with ducks and geese. This is the best fat for cookies and frying potatoes. Plus you get those wonderful cracklins. If I ever get around to raising my own pigs I'll have the lard problem solved.
    Transfatty acids are very nasty and we do our best to avoid them. It'll be nice when we at least can get the labeling in effect.
     
  13. breezynosacek

    breezynosacek Well-Known Member

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    When I grew up and lived up north, we used lard. It was natural for us to use it. That's what grandma cooked with. I had no health problems with lard.

    In FL, I would buy the big bucket like I did up north and the thing would start to go bad on me or you would buy it and it smelled old when you first brought it home so I started using margarine and oils.

    My cholesterol is sky high!

    So, I'm going to grow me some pigs and render my own lard and that's that. I haven't been able to make a decent pie crust without lard.
     
  14. Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians

    Vicki McGaugh TX Nubians Well-Known Member

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    I was actually shocked with my move to Texas and finding out that their lard is all hydrogenated, even the same Armour brand I used in CA. This is not found in San Diego, perhaps because of the border influence. I haven't used Crisco or other hydrogenated products like this, except in soap, for years.

    I use coconut oil, which is not an oil, but a butter. Now our super Wallmart sells it! It makes wonderful bakery products, and is much cheaper to use than butter. Butter is saved for Christmas cooking. For all cooking, I actually fry very little, I use olive, Wallmart also has a new cheaper lighter olive that works really well. I keep mine in a pretty bottle (it's actually a Jack Daniels bottle) with an alcohol spout on top, you can get these at most high end stores cheaply. They are great for pourable products like dish soap, vinegar and olive oil that you only want to use little amounts of. Or better yet with kids, it makes them only get out a little bit at a time :)

    If you find a brand of lard in our area that is just lard and no hydrogenated oils, I would love to know, somehow tortillas made without lard is just not right!!! Vicki
     
  15. breezynosacek

    breezynosacek Well-Known Member

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    Oh don't I know it! When I finally did find a brand of lard in FL that was decent and fresh, hubby turned his nose up at it and said it tasted different. I said sure it does! It doesn't have a bunch of junk in it!

    Half the stuff my hubby eats now he used to snarl his nose up at! :haha: :haha:

    Goodness, I haven't made homemade tortillas in such a long time. I don't have a press, never did but you just about have to have lard to make a decent tortilla.
     
  16. perennial

    perennial Well-Known Member

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    When I bake - all the time - the guys all want their dessert after lunch and dinner. I use butter in my choc. chip cookies - 1/2 c. - what would you use?

    Wouldn't the texture be totally different using oils? I've also started making my own crackers, etc. - oil there too?

    brural
     
  17. BCR

    BCR Well-Known Member

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    brural--is there a reason you are trying to cut out butter? If you feel you must, restrict your use elsewhere and enjoy the cookies! Just don't east as many of them ;)
     
  18. Terri

    Terri Singletree & Weight Loss & Permaculture Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Some types of fat make a chewy cookie, others make a crispy cookie. Mostly I use peanut butter in my cookies, which makes a cookie that is rich and SOMEWHAT crunchy.

    Why don't you try the oil once and see how the folks like it?
     
  19. perennial

    perennial Well-Known Member

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    Hi BCR,

    No, there is no reason. I just hear so much "bad" stuff about butter and read about other people here using oils. I only use butter in all my baking, so I was curious. My guys only have one dessert after lunch and after supper (in general). I don't use much anywhere else, except a tiny bit on fresh veggies, but even though most of the time, I just served steamed and that's it. I use olive oil in all my stove/oven cooking and veggie oil when I make pancakes, waffles or my famous vinegar/oil cake.

    I get a three pack of non-name brand butter at my local B.J.'s wholesale for a decent price and buy a few (every six weeks) and freeze most of them (they last a long time in the freezer and I'm never out of butter for baking.


    brural
     
  20. swamp_deb

    swamp_deb Well-Known Member

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    I now use "Smart Balance" vegetable shortening for baking, it is trans fat free and non-hydrogenated. It is a patented blend to help improve cholesterol. They also make oil. Had been using their "margarine" since hubby had bypass 2 years ago. Had our first fried chicken in 2 years when this product came out. So far it is only available at Walmart in our town.
    It is owned and Dist. by: Heart Beat Foods
    Division of GFA Brands, Inc. P.o. Box 397 Cresskill, NJ 07626
    Smart Balance was reccomended by the nutritionist at the hosp.
    1 cup plus 6 teaspoons water = 1 cup butter
    Any food store should be able to order for you.