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What is beef suet exactly? I want to make a REAL mincemeat pie, but none of my area stores seem to know anything when I ask.

asked by shelovestocook about 6 years ago
9 answers 9330 views
23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added about 6 years ago

Suet is the fat located around the kidneys of beef or lamb. I suspect it is not available over the counter but ask the butcher. Look at this recipe that does not use suet. Most recipes do not use it. http://www.cooks.com/rec...

23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added about 6 years ago

It's beef fat. If your grocery store breaks down its own meat they should have it (or at least know what it is - or where you can get it). Sometimes even our chain grocers here in VT have it so people can make suet and seed balls for winter birds. I'd like to be surprised that none of your stores know what it is but I guess I'm really not.

9b94e94b 0205 4f2c bb79 1845dcd6f7d6  uruguay2010 61
added about 6 years ago

Mincemeat is the holygrail of holiday sweets. Don't mess with it with other fats. It is all part of the product

8e94e86b faa9 42ae 93f9 c243369e2b3f  cakecake
added about 6 years ago

I've been wanting to try my hand at mincemeat for years, but haven't found anyone else who will eat it... bunch of chickens. :) Thanks for the question and info!

Fff96a46 7810 4f5c a452 83604ac1e363  dsc03010
added about 6 years ago

Most chain groceries don't know what suet is because they no longer have bona fide butchers who can cut up a side of meat--it comes pre-packaged, pre-wrapped, pre-ground, pre-weighed, pre-priced and pre-frozen (for your convenience) and it's put out for sale by regular stock people, who merely label the packages with sell-by dates and who know less about animals and their by-products than the contestants in the audience when Letterman plays "Know Your Cuts of Meat."

I asked for suet a while back for bird feeders, like Gale said, and I was met with a blank stare. As I shopped further, however, I found a package in the offal section by the tripe and salt pork and ham hocks. A friend told me she saw suet at the local hardware/feed store, but I wonder if it could be used for human consumption.

If you don't find suet, substitute 3/4 vegetable shortening with 1/4 leaf lard, which you also might have trouble finding. If you end up using lard, try not to buy the shelf-stable stuff; look for lard that is refrigerated. Or find a real butcher.

I only had real mincemeat once, in the 60s, and while I really like it, it's something I've never made. All the other times I've had it, it's been like glorified raisin pie. It's very cool that you want to try this. Let us know how it turns out.

401c5804 f611 451f a157 c693981d8eef  mad cow deux
pierino

pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.

added about 6 years ago

betteirene is preaching to the choir on this one. I agree with every detail. All the tees are dotted and all the eyes are crossed. But I would like to add further emphasis to her comment on leaf lard. It's worth the trouble to look for. Manteca lard, sold in those big blocks will make your pie smell like a pork chop.

8e94e86b faa9 42ae 93f9 c243369e2b3f  cakecake
added about 6 years ago

What exactly IS leaf lard? Never heard of it.

9b94e94b 0205 4f2c bb79 1845dcd6f7d6  uruguay2010 61
added about 6 years ago

Leaf lard is the coating of fat along the kidney of a pig . . suet in beef counter part. Makes the best lard for pies.

401c5804 f611 451f a157 c693981d8eef  mad cow deux
pierino

pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.

added about 6 years ago

Depending on where you live, one source for leaf lard is Surfas in Culver City, CA. They sell it frozen and once you defrost it you have to render it yourself, the bonus being that the by product will be really delicious cracklings. I'm sure you can order on-line from them but because it's a frozen and very perishable product the shipping costs may be triple what the stuff sells for.