That’s right…I’m going to teach you how to make your very own butter from scratch! But what’s homemade butter without fresh bread? Still pretty amazing…but I’m also going to show you how to make a homemade french baguette to slather that homemade butter on while it’s piping hot out of YOUR oven. Does it get any better than that?
I have to dedicate this post to my oldest sister Carolyn, who just may be butters’ biggest fan. She is an amazing cook who has taught me so much about food. I know better than to make butter and not share with her.
Since baking bread can be quite a process I am going to split this into two posts. If you’re only interested in the baguette, stay tuned. (But are you crazy? Make the butter too!)
Making butter is a pretty simple process, but it is also a lot of work for a little outcome. One pint of whipping cream will make about 1 stick of butter. I suggest using two pints, ultimately making two sticks of butter. It will not go to waste – trust me.
Pour the cream into a large mixing bowl and begin whipping. That’s really all it takes!
I had every intention of making this completely by hand like they did in the 1800’s – a true pioneer! Yeah…didn’t happen. After five minutes of vigourous whisking my arm felt like it was going to fall off and I caved. I ended up using an eletric hand mixer but if you have a stand mixer by all means use that – it will take a lot less time and effort!
We’ve all seen cream at this stage – stiff peaks! Sorry, not even close, keep whisking!
Eventually, you will start to see tiny granules form in the cream. At this stage we have agitated the fat so much that it is begining to seperate from the buttermilk, which is exactly what we want.
Whisk and whip and then whisk and whip some more until you see something like this…
The fat has completely separated from the buttermilk. Perfect.
Pull up the corners of the cheese cloth and squeeze out as much liquid as you possibly can.
Important step: run the butter under some cool water while it is in the cheese cloth and once again squeeze out as much liquid as possible. What you are trying to do is rinse off any of the remaining butterfat.
Now you should have a big hunk of butter (almost) and some fresh buttermilk. Use this buttermilk for biscuits or pancakes!
Now we are going to salt the butter and at the same time ensure that we got out as much liquid as possible. Spread the hunk of butter out slightly on a wooden cutting board with a wooden spoon. Sprinkle the butter with 1/4 tsp of salt and begin working it into the butter with the wooden spoon. Just keep folding the butter over on itself and smearing it out again over the wood. The wooden board and the wooden spoon will absorb any remaining moisture that you couldn’t squeeze out before.
And there you have it. YOU JUST MADE BUTTER! And it tastes ooohhhh so good. I like to shape it into a stick, wrap it in wax paper and label it with the date in case I want to freeze it.
Some ideas you might want to try…
- Use organic whipping cream
- Seperate the butter into batches and make different “compound butters” for steak and fish by adding minced shallot, garlic, & fresh herbs. The next time you grill steak or fish slice off a piece of the compound butter and let it melt over the hot dish!
French Baguette recipe to come soon! In the meantime, bon appetit!