Blog Post: Butter Magic, Part 1: Making Butter in a Jar
We’ve had a couple requests for a step-by-step butter making tutorial, and I think it’s a brilliant idea. Butter is one of the easiest home dairy recipes that you can make, and homemade butter adds another dimension of deliciousness to sourdough bread, vegetables, or breakfast. There are, however, a few tips and tricks that will help turn you into a butter making champ. Ready? Here we go! The simplest way to make butter is to fill a quart sized Mason jar halfway up with heavy cream. Be sure to use a metal lid…NOT plastic. The plastic lids are not liquid tight and your tasty, expensive cream could end up on your clothes instead of turning into butter. Once your jar is filled (halfway) and the lid is on nice and tight, get shaking! This is what will happen after a few minutes of vigorous shaking. See how the jar is now three quarters full? That’s why we start with halfway! Shaking can get tiring and boring, and you’ll be here a while, so I like to put my older kids to work, rolling the jar back and forth on a clean rug, towel, or blanket. I should note that about five minutes after this picture was taken, my children decided that it was much more fun to chase each other with the jar, which is scarier but just as effective in butter making. Almost there… And…we have butter, my friends! You can culture the buttermilk with our buttermilk starter, drink it as is, or use it in baking or cooking. I love to let it sour (my cream is raw) and use it to add a little oomph to a sourdough starter. The next step is to drain and rinse your butter, so it will stay fresh and sweet. When you are using a jar, the easiest way to do that is to pour off the buttermilk, then cover the butter in the jar with COLD water and shake again. Note that the water is cloudy and still has a lot of buttermilk in it. You will want to repeat this step several times, until the water runs clear. I filled and shook this jar five times. At this point I like to add a teaspoon of sea or kosher salt, shake it until it’s combined with my butter, and rinse again. This salts my butter (the rinse prevents it from being too salty) and helps drain more buttermilk, which will make my butter last longer. Not that anything this fabulous will last very long…it’s too yummy! Voila! Butter! Magic. Next we will talk about making butter in larger quantities, and with slightly more technology. Happy culturing!
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