Basic Home Made Butter

Another recipe from the lockdown sessions of 2020…homemade butter.

I was bored.

Some double cream was in the fridge and needed a use.

Like hell was I wasting it…so I got wondering….butter?

It turned out to be amazing. And very, very easy. Think making your own butter is difficult? Like hell it is. Just try it. It’s super simple, you can flavour it how you want and it’s so rewarding and utterly gorgeous.

This is a basic salted version. But this is sort of like a grown up playdo (remember that stuff?) – except you can eat this version and you can make it taste how you want.

(Admit it, you tried to eat playdo….or was that just me?)

INGREDIENTS

600ml double cream

7g Maldon Sea Salt

And…if you so desire…other stuff!

EQUIPMENT

Now, you can get really involved here and get muslin cloths etc but if you’re going to use this quickly, a good colander will do the job with a bit of patience and attention, giving it the odd turn to drain properly.

A good food processer, electric whisks, or The Rock with a whisk (he probably does socially distanced house calls, let’s face it he’s a real life super hero). One of those will do the job.

I mean I know what I’d prefer but I’ve already got a KitchenAid so…

METHOD

Pour cream in processor bowl.

Start to whip.

Get bored.

Start to think it won’t work.

Realise you’ve just got overwhipped cream and conclude that the girl from The Food Waffle is an idiot.

( The above theory has yet to be proven entirely conclusively one way or the other, tests are ongoing)

Next:

Panic that this was a bad idea.

Hear a sudden sloshing noise as the buttermilk and the actual fats split. Which is when you check and realise you have a load of butter and a lot of buttermilk alongside.

Turn the thing off. Before the buttermilk goes bloody everywhere. Which it will because it’s getting belted around a mixing bowl by a whacking great lump of fresh-canvas-please-flavour-me-as-you-desire butter.

Okay I admit it doesn’t look totally sensational at this stage…no actually it really does. Look at it! A great big cloud of fresh butter you can flavour how you want…and we all know first impressions shouldn’t be based on looks anyway

Ok so the important thing is to drain the buttermilk from the butter fat. So, colander comes into play. Drain for a good while, pat dry carefully with a paper towel, move it around and let it drain well (I’m sure a muslin cloth and a good throttling would be better but let’s face it, we’re all more likely to have spare pot of cream in the fridge than a freshly sterilised muslin in the cupboard). Give it a good knead with your (clean!) hands to get any excess out – any leftover buttermilk will make it spoil quicker.

Salt in.

Mix well – probably at this stage more buttermilk will appear as the salt draws it out, so drain and dry again – don’t waste the buttermilk though as it’s great to make things like cornbread or soda bread.

(Christ I sound like Gordon Ramsey. I must be taking this food blogging thing too seriously.)

Roll in greaseproof paper and store in the refrigerator or freeze.

Anyway… This is a basic salted butter recipe which for me works brilliantly – Maldon Sea Salt has that perfect balance of gentle flavour but still makes this savoury – but as you can see from the ideas in the photos here you can then take this where you like. Mix well, get the flavouring in there.

(Just bear in mind if not salted it’ll probably spoil quicker – and I’m not a qualified expert so would only advise using this in the immediate time and days after production BUT herbed and spiced versions are amazing additions to roasts and meat dishes and on beautiful fresh bread. I know what this year’s Christmas turkey is getting massaged with before he gets a little hot under the lack of feathers…so for me flavoured versions kept in the freezer for a few weeks in advance of meals like that are brilliant, equally diced into rounds so you can easily add to chicken, fish or vegetable dishes – just freeze laid out separately first and then chuck in a bag together so you can take what you want.)

In short, this is a canvas. You can take this wherever you want! Pepper, chilli, herbs, spice, aromatics. And each to their own as the levels go. I personally am a chilli freak so a super hot butter for the right cut of meat is going in the freezer pretty soon. But a heavily herbed one massaged over a roast chicken or turkey (or under the skin if you’re Jamie Oliver – and in fairness it’s worth the effort) or a spiced one with beautiful fresh prawns is equally delicious – or just peppery with asparagus in season or with a poached egg on good bread any way you like.

Always take care to check it smells and looks how it should, as obviously we’re doing a homemade version of something that we trust from supermarkets for however long – but if it seems like beautiful, flavoursome, homemade treat, then bloody well slap it on some warm bread and enjoy x

PS…Yes I’ve just realised the pics for this post has a little butter Pac Man……

….what can you do?

Happy cooking all x

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