I have a confession to make. I used to have my kids make butter when they were driving me crazy. Which was often. Let’s just say…we had a lot of butter. I would hand them a small baby food jar filled with cream and a pinch of sea salt and tell them to take turns shaking it until it became butter. It kept them busy for about 15 minutes, which is a long time in mom minutes. But butter making isn’t just a way to keep kids occupied, grown ups love it too. So I decided to make a step by step tutorial: How to Make Raw or Pasteurized Butter! No baby food jars or shaking required.
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It’s Not 1850, Why Make Your Own Butter?
First and not surprisingly, homemade butter tastes better than store bought. It just does, I can’t tell you why other than that you are going to be using the thickest, best quality organic cream you can find and an excellent sea salt. But there is another reason to make butter! I, on occasion find myself with too much cream. I buy cream for a recipe and use only a portion and have no use for the rest. Rather than waste it, I turn it into butter!
Obviously I am giving you a recipe below, but here is the run down step by step….whip up some heavy cream (raw or pasteurized cream it’s up to you). Be sure to buy the thickest, creamiest organic cream you can find. My favorite is raw and grass fed.
When It Looks Like Whipped Cream You’re Halfway There!
I would guess most of us have made whipped cream, making butter is very similar. When the cream looks like whipped cream you add a pinch of sea salt and just keep on whipping! By the way, I adore my Mini KitchenAid Stand Mixer. It’s small and light and fits in a regular size cupboard without killing my shoulders every time I pull it out!
Ah… We Have Butter. And Guess What? It’s Good For You!
A few minutes after achieving whipped cream status, you will reach ‘butter status’. Thick, sweet cream butter! Now, I know butter has gotten a bad rap in the past, but butter has many healthful properties. Butter contains CLA, a type of fat that may have cancer-fighting properties, as well as help reduce body fat and improve immune function. Butter is rich in butyrate, a type of short chain fatty acid that has been associated with several benefits including reduced inflammation, reduced insulin sensitivity and electrolyte balancing. Butyrate is also produced by the beneficial bacteria in your gut and is used as a source of energy for the cells in your intestines. One tablespoon of butter contains 11% of your daily requirement of Vitamin A and 2% of your daily requirement of Vitamin E and K!
Buttermilk is a byproduct of making butter, see it there in the mixing bowl? After making the butter you can strain the butter milk and save it in the fridge for up to a week or freeze for later use in my Vanilla Buttermilk Cake. See what I did there:)
“Washing” and Storing Butter:
If you are going to use your butter right away, you can stop here. If you would like it to keep for weeks or months, you should “wash it”. That simply means you place it in ice water and press out the excess buttermilk you didn’t quite strain out on the first try. If you would like to see a video on washing butter click here. After washing, you can store it however you like in any shape you like. You can spoon onto parchment paper and form into a log and wrap it up, or store in an airtight container, or press into a mold of your choice! Butter lasts 6-9 months in the fridge!
Personally, I Think Homemade Butter Makes a Great Gift!
Need a gift for the neighbors, teachers, mailman or your best pal? Butter baby. I mean wouldn’t you be thrilled to receive creamy homemade organic grass fed sweet cream butter wrapped in parchment and a cute string? Or in a decorated mason jar? I would be your BBF if you gave this to me. But then again I made my kids make butter as a punishment…so there’s that.
Want More ‘How To’s”?
The Recipe: How to Make Raw or Pasteurized Butter
What you need: a mixer ( I love my Mini KitchenAid Stand Mixer) and a quality sea salt. I buy the tub to save a lot of money! You will need cheese cloth or a mesh strainer (also known as a nut milk bag) to strain buttermilk.
15 minutes to fresh, sweet cream butter!
- 1 pint heavy cream
- pinch sea salt
Place cream in mixer and mix on low/med speed for about five minutes or until bubbles form (you can place the splash guard on your mixer or cover with a dish towel to prevent splatter)
Add salt, then move speed up to med/high until cream looks like whipped cream
Once whipped cream is achieved set mixer on high speed and keep a close eye, it goes from whipped cream to butter pretty quickly! Once you have butter let the mixer continue and it will force the liquid out of the butter, making buttermilk! Turn off mixer
Place butter in a cheese cloth or "nut bag" and squeeze out as much buttermilk as you can. Pour buttermilk through a mesh strainer to remove any butter chunks. You can store buttermilk in the fridge for a week or freeze in ice cube tray to freeze, and then thaw as needed. If you are using butter right away you can stop here. If you'd like to keep it for weeks or months you'll want to "wash it" to avoid having the smell of buttermilk.
Rinse out mixing bowl. Remove the butter from the cloth and place it back in the bowl. Add 1/2 cup of ice water to the bowl, and use a spatula to press the butter into the ice water. The water will become milky. Pour off the cloudy water, add another 1/2 cup of ice water to the bowl, and press again. Repeat until the water is clear. This may take 5-6 washings. The butter will firm up towards the end, so you may find using your hands works better at this point.
Scoop butter into a any dish you wish or place on parchment or wax paper and use hands to form into a log and wrap it up! Cover butter and store in the fridge for up to 3 months or freeze for up to a year, removing to soften as needed.
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