For a longtime I wanted to know how to make butter but I thought it would be really hard and time consuming. The first time I tried to make homemade butter I mentally prepared myself for a long and laborious process. After all, it was butter I was making, right? Well, wrong. I mean, I was making butter, but soon I discovered it was the easiest thing I had ever and would ever make. As you can imagine that is where my butter ‘phase’ began. Unsalted butter, sea salt butter, savory butter (pesto, rosemary, garlic), strawberry butter (best on popovers…mmmmm…a whole other video), truffle butter, to name a few. They were all made and devoured.
The ironic part is is that I’m not even a butter person. But homemade, whipped butter, I can’t resist! I also found that the quality of cream directly impacts the quality of your butter – mainly taste, but also the creamy mouthfeel. I highly recommend using Strauss heavy cream for your butter if you can get it in your area. We used their organic milk in our cheesemaking for years until we found a good local milk. But I digress. And a good butter can ‘stand alone’ or you can use it to make a composite butter like the pesto butter or strawberry butter I make in the video below. Make sense? That doesn’t mean you can’t or shouldn’t use other heavy cream for everyday cooking – but if you want to make a great butter start with the best heavy cream you can get. Strauss is only available in a few states but you can probably get Horizon wherever you are and it is good too.
Case in point: It’s time for me to share with you one of my favorite stories from a few years ago. One night, I told my kids I would make them rice krispie treats and my third child (my mini me) was in the kitchen with me helping as she always does. She was 8 at the time. As we were getting out ingredients I realized I was out of butter. It was late at night and I wasn’t going to the store to get some. Everyone knows you can’t make rice krispie treats without butter, so I turned to my daughter and gave her the bad news. It was then that she tilted her cute little head and looking up at me said, “Mommy, why don’t you make butter?” Completely in awe of her I said slowly, ”You are brilliant,” then repeating her words back to her, “Why doesn’t mommy make butter?” I loved the fact that my 8 year old knew how to make butter too.
We raced to the refrigerator to find the heavy cream I always keep in there, nothing fancy, just heavy cream, and went for the stand mixer. In five minutes I had butter and in ten minutes my kids had rice krispie treats. It may sound silly, but I will never forget that story and it helps that she made me look really good that night! Do yourself a favor, go and make some butter and maybe, just maybe you’ll have your own butter story to tell. Making homemade butter has rewards beyond just the butter, like good stories. 🙂 If you have questions or want to share a creation you can do it here or on our facebook page. Enjoy!
How To Make Butter
- 1 quart (4 cups) heavy cream, room temperature
- 2-4 tbsp pesto
- 2-4 tbsp strawberry jam or any flavor jam you prefer
- 2-3 tsp sea salt, coarse
- 2-3 tsp rosemary, thyme or any herb/spice you prefer
In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment beat cream for 3-5 mins or until the cream separates into solid and liquid. **Note: the colder the cream the longer it will take to separate into butter. Using a colander, drain the liquid out of the butter and place butter solids in a bowl. Rinse with cold water, drain, knead the butter and repeat the process until the water is no longer opaque and cloudy. You will never get the water completely clear, but the clearer it is the longer your butter will last. If poorly rinsed the butter will turn rancid within a day or two. After your butter is thoroughly washed, place it in a clean, dry bowl. At this point you have unsalted butter. You can leave it as is and refrigerate it or you can season/flavor it or you can divide it up making more than 1 flavor of butter. Your choice. Keep in an airtight container or butter dish and refrigerate.