Home made butter
The original superfood !
Butter is one of my favourite things in the world. I can eat it spread deliciously thick on home made sourdough straight out of the oven and I am as happy as can be. Despite the bad press butter has got in the last few decades, common sense shows us that it is utter nonsense and now thankfully science is telling us that butter is better and we have no reason to fear it.
Butter used to be considered unhealthy, because it contains saturated fat.
However, this is actually not a valid argument against butter, because the saturated fat myth has been thoroughly debunked in recent years.
Butter from lovely healthy grass fed cows is one of natures most precious foods. It is packed full of healthy fats which feed the brain and give instant energy to the body. Putting a lovely knob of butter on your cooked veg allows you to absorb all the fat soluble vitamins that are present in the vegetables. If you eat vegetables without healthy fats you only get some of the nutrients. So not only is butter delicious but it increases the bio-availability of nutrients in other foods that you eat it with.
Butter is also jam packed with heart healthy fats, vitamin K2, omega 3 fatty acids, CLA or conjugated linoleic acid, which helps reduce belly fat, protects against cancer and encourages muscle growth.
It is packed with Vitamin A, which helps to maintain thyroid, adrenal and cardiovascular health.
The Vitamin K2 that butter contains supports bone density.
Vitamins A,D and E in butter, are all key antioxidants that are essential to good health. Need I say more? I could go on but I think you get the picture, I LOVE BUTTER 🙂
There are plenty of good quality organic grass fed butters available in the supermarkets the world over, my local supermarket in England has even started selling unpasteurised butter from France which I was pleasantly surprised by and delighted to see. However nothing is more satisfying than making your own. Its incredibly easy and well worth the effort, even if you don’t make it all the time its worth making every once in a while. Get the kids involved too, they love it.
*If you are going to use some of your homemade butter to make ghee, be sure to leave out the salt.
*Unsalted butter should be eaten within a few days but salted butter will last for a couple of weeks.
*For this method you are best yo use a pair of butter bats, they make the final butter look neat and tidy but they are not essential. If you don’t have any butter pats, you can just use your hands.
*Sunlight taints butter so if serving it outside, try to keep it covered, and when storing your lovely butter store it in a covered butter dish.
*To make cultured butter, which is more traditional, leave unpasteurised cream in a cool place, well covered for up to 48 hours to ripen before following the method for making butter below.
*Keep the left over buttermilk to make pancakes or soda bread
This recipe makes just under 1Kg of butter and just under 1L of buttermilk
Makes just under 1kg of butter and just under 1L of buttermilk
2L of organic double cream, at room temperature, unpasturised or pasteurised, and not homogenised
1.5 teaspoons of flaky sea salt, leave out if you want unsalted butter
Start by soaking your wooden butter pats in ice water. This helps them not to stick to the butter.
Next you want to pour your cream into a sterilised, chilled mixing bowl and whisk at medium speed.
It will go through various stages, first it will be softly whipped then it will be stiffly whipped, then it will start to collapse and separate. You should see the buttermilk separate and start sloshing around the bowl, this is good, keep going until it is well separated.
Now tip the entire contents into a sieve over a bowl and allow the buttermilk to drain from the butter.
Put the butter back into a clean bowl, and beat with a whisk for a further 30 seconds to 1 minute, to expel any remaining buttermilk. Remove and sieve as before.
(Place the buttermilk in clean jug or glass jar and set aside to make pancakes or soda bread or waffles. )
Next fill the bowl containing the butter with very cold iced water. At this stage use the butter bats or your hands, whichever you prefer, to knead the butter to force out any remaining buttermilk.
Do not skip this step, as any buttermilk remaining in the butter will sour and cause the butter to go off. If you handle the butter to much with your hands it will liquify so be sure to act quickly at this point.
Drain the water and repeat the previous step a couple more times, or until the water is totally clear and you are sure there is no more buttermilk in the butter.
Separate the butter into desired sized portions and pat into shape using the butter bats or wet hands that have been soaked in iced water. This stops the butter from sticking to the ridges of the bats. Wrap your butter in grease proof paper and store in the fridge until ready to use.
*If using salt, you will need to add a couple of pinches of flaky sea salt for every 100g of butter.
To incorporate the salt into the butter, simply lay the portions of butter flat and sprinkle with salt before massaging it in and then shaping with wet hands or icy butter bats.
*If you find the butter wont stop sticking to your hands or the bats, soak the bats in VERY cold iced water for at least 30 minutes before proceeding once again. If you don’t have bats, shape the butter in the iced water.