November 28, 2010

Homemade Butter

Were having our Turkey Day 2010! celebration tomorrow.  I am super excited!  Shane and I sadly missed out on our Thanksgiving dinner back in October due to some unforeseen circumstances, so we, (I) decided it would be a lot of fun to invite my in-laws and visitors from Europe, over for a turkey dinner.  And a lot of fun it has been planning and thinking and list writing.  I've had full control over the menu because we're coming at it as a dinner party not Thanksgiving.  That just may be the best part, I basically get to design my dream Thanksgiving dinner!  I started cooking today, and one of the items on my list was homemade butter.

I figured that since I was making bread I needed a great butter to go along with it.  Homemade butter is very simple, it all comes down to quality of ingredients.  The better the cream you use the better the end result.  Unfortunately there are no organic creams to be found in my neck of the woods but even so, my butter far surpasses any store bought around here.  Do this as a project, its certainly not something I could use as a substitute in my baking, it's cheaper to buy at the store in pounds, but for on bread where you really taste the butter have a little fun.

Homemade Butter

You can add most anything to flavour the butter in the same step you add the salt.  You could add honey, for honey butter on toast.  You could add rosemary or thyme to melt over sauteed green beans.  You could add smoked paprika and dollop it on top of a steak.

You can easily double and triple the quantities to come out with a better yield.  Two cups of cream makes about 1/2 cup of butter.

2 c cream
salt to taste

Pour the cream into a stand mixer with a whisk attachment.  Cover the top of the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and turn mixer to medium-high speed.  Mix for 5-8 minutes.  The cream will go through the whipped stage and then turn yellowish in colour.  When the mix starts to look pebbly its almost done, just mix it for another minute or so until it separates and the liquid splashes up against the plastic.  Stop the mixer here.

Place a strainer over a bowl and dump the whole mixture into it.  The liquid that falls off is buttermilk and should be saved for baking.

Keeping the butter over the bowl knead the butter to get all the liquid out.  Knead until the butter is dense and creamy.  Mix in salt if you want, or keep it plain.  Refrigerate the butter in an air tight container until needed.

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