You read that right: homemade butter. No, I didn't spend hours churning it in a wooden tub (though some part of me loves the Little House on the Prairie fantasy of doing just that, on a porch, wearing a bonnet). Since introducing the mini food processor into the kitchen, I have been searching for recipes to try. I have read from various blogs over the past two years about people making their own butter and how it was out-of-this-world amazing. Now that I have the right equipment, I can finally find out if they are right!
The first thing to know about butter is that you have to have really high fat cream for it to work, because butter is essentially the fat of milk. That little nugget made me stop and think about butter in a new light! I tried this first with whole milk for some reason and it hardly produced any butter. So if you can get heavy or double cream you will get a fair amount of butter.
I poured the double cream into the food processor and whirled it around for a while. When I stopped after a minute or so, it looked like I had just whipped the cream a lot. This was not encouraging and I was beginning to be doubtful about this experimental project.
I kept going, trudging through my doubts and then something amazing happened. All of a sudden, in a flash, bam!
The butter and leftover milk (buttermilk) split. I scooped out the buttery bits into a bowl and could tell that they needed some pressing. I think technically to get the best butter you are supposed to put the butter into cheesecloth and press all of the excess milk out. I do not have cheesecloth (yet) and so just ended up pressing the butter in a bowl with the back of my spoon.
It worked pretty well and I even managed to press some of the butter into a pretty mold.
The consistency and taste was definitely like butter, but more creamy. Next time, I will try adding a smidgen of salt as well.
There is some small portion of me that absolutely loves making foods that normally are in a convenient form these days, like butter. I think it is satisfying knowing how easy it is to make good, wholesome food to eat and share with those you love. (Also, if Armageddon ever happens, I will be set.) It's also just plain fun to create food that you get to enjoy afterwards. Perhaps it is because work is a little slow just now that I have been thinking that to cook and bake and make staples like butter every day would be grand. It might get old after a while but right now I am pondering this thought.