Thursday, 18 September 2014

Homemade Butter, "how to"

WHY? because butter tastes better and it is fun to do .
Unless you have a cheap and plentiful supply of cream – a cow grazing in the garden, say – you're unlikely to want to make your own butter day in, day out. But for a special occasion, to go alongside homemade crumpets or sourdough bread, perhaps, it's the icing on the cake.
For 400-450g of butter you'll need 900ml thickened cream. Let this come to room temperature while you prepare a few litres of ice-cold water. Use some of this to chill a large mixing bowl, two stiff spatulas and the blades of an electric whisk. Empty out the mixing bowl, pour in the cream and beat it at a high speed for about 10 minutes. First the cream will thicken, then it will make soft peaks and eventually it will become stiff and form crumbly-looking clumps. Keep on whisking and suddenly you'll find a whitish liquid pooling at the bottom of the bowl. The liquid is buttermilk, which you can drink or use in baking. ( I will be making buttermilk pancakes later today)
Carry on beating for a minute or two, until there's no more liquid to liberate, then remove the whisk. Strain the cream into a container and put it in the fridge.
Now you need to wash your developing butter of any remaining buttermilk, which will make it spoil more quickly. Pour in enough ice-cold water to cover the butter comfortably and use clean hands to press it down as hard as possible. You'll quickly see that the water you poured in becomes cloudy. Tip this away and repeat the washing and squeezing process five or six times until the water runs fairly clear. Don't be afraid to lift up and turn the butter as you go, but work as fast as you can so it doesn't have time to heat up.
Once the washing is finished, sprinkle over a teaspoon of crumbled sea salt (if that's the way you roll, butter-wise) and either shape the butter into two or three blocks with the spatulas, or cram it into a couple of glass pots. It will keep for a week in the fridge, or six months in the freezer. (I made one big log and let it get hard in the fridge first ,then I will divide and freeze some ) .You can add herbs,salts, garlic or what ever you like to you butter before you roll it out.
Homemade Butter

homemade butter

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