Making Butter

8 Aug

Same stuff, different URL!

I have moved to: harvette.com

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Part 1 of a two-part series: I’m making butter, then using the buttermilk left over to make cheese.

My kitchen was a butter-coated disaster after making FOUR batches of homemade butter Saturday afternoon. The batches were defined by the amount of heavy cream my trusty stand mixer could turn into butter at one time – this amount turned out to be 1 quart of cream per batch. I started with 1 gallon of heavy cream and ended up with 1 lb and 13oz of butter.

I wish I could say that I took pictures during the process, but it was too much of a mess! I took pictures of the mess instead. Making butter is easy and one single batch is not much to complain about – but after making batch after batch butter started falling on the counters, the floor, it was on my hands, I accidentally stepped on some and every utensil in the kitchen was dirty. Oh and  that one time I started checking facebook while the mixer was going and HEY! the butter was done earlier than I expected; I lost a bit of buttermilk due to it sloshing all over the place.

However, I really enjoyed it. At one point, while I was cleaning a huge chunk of butter, with my (clean) hands, in a large bowl of iced water, I realized that working at a small scale creamery would be awesome. I love making dairy products and I find all of the processes involved, plus the science behind it, fascinating. Sure, even a small scale creamery uses a more effective process to wash the butter than just hands and iced water (I should have used the blender or food processor, but was too lazy to drag either out), but it would still be fun.

I’m not going to go into too much of a description of making butter, it really is very easy.

Whip heavy cream in a standing mixer (or with a hand mixer, or even shake the cream in a jar) until it goes though it’s various states: frothy, whipped cream, really whipped cream, butter.

Plus others have already explained the process. Here are a few links I found helpful in my process:

How to Make Butter @ Omnomicon – The first time I made butter I followed Aleta’s directions!

Cooking for Engineers – Making Butter

Butter through the ages – lots of good background info here

The butter tastes great. Thus far I’ve used it to cook with, on homemade bread (homemade butter on homemade bread!) and on toast. I’ll probably eventually use a lot of it to bake with – I left it all unsalted and froze it so that it would stay fresh.

I did end up with the buttermilk I need to start on part 2: making buttermilk cheese. I didn’t measure the amount of buttermilk I ended up with – though I know I could have been more efficient in the process and ended up with more. This was supposed to be fun though, so I didn’t worry about it! In the next part of this series I’ll talk about the cheese I made with this buttermilk:

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4 Responses to “Making Butter”

  1. Homebake Queen August 9, 2010 at 4:00 am #

    Oh wow, I am super impressed with your butter making! Did you taste the difference between shop bought and your own? I’ve made my own cheese a few times but never butter… I’m feeling inspired! Thanks for the post 🙂

    • Harvette August 9, 2010 at 2:34 pm #

      Oh if you’ve made your own cheese, making butter is even easier!

      I actually didn’t taste too much of a difference, though I did leave mine unsalted. I think if I’d shelled out the money for super fresh, local, heavy cream the butter would have tasted REALLY good! but as I needed a gallon of cream I went with the store brand heavy cream. 😉

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Warm Bruchetta « - August 9, 2010

    […] 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (if you’re crazy like me, use your own homemade butter) […]

  2. Buttermilk Cheese Fail « - August 18, 2010

    […] Aug Part 2 of a two-part series: Making butter, then using the buttermilk left over to make […]

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