Sunday, February 3, 2013

I can't believe it's butter!

For my entire life I have only ever eaten butter.  Real butter.  My mother has never used margarine or artificial butter in anything she has cooked, and my uncle who I spent all of my summers with as a child never used margarine either.  I grew up knowing that margarine was unhealthy for me.  If you want to learn the difference between butter and margarine come over for any holiday, my mother and my uncle will be sure to educate you!  

Since being on my own there has never been any question, in my house we use butter.  The Reluctant Farmer and decided to try to make our own butter last night.  We had heard it was easy to do, and figured if we bought our own cream from a local farmer we could buy locally and live healthier!  

We had very vague directions from a book, and after a failed attempt we finally figured it out.  It tasted great and it was super easy!  

To make butter you need a pint of heavy whipping cream and 1 tsp. of salt.  You put those 2 ingredients into your mixer (with the paddle or whisk attachment attached!) and mix it on high for several minutes until it "breaks".

Adding the ingredients to the mixer.  (Note this attachment is not conducive to butter making!)

The cream thickened but never broke with this attachment.

Slightly frustrated we tossed the original batch of butter and tried again.

This time we put the whisk attachment on and turner the mixer up to high. 

After doing this, the liquid thickened within several minutes, and firmed to the consistency of frosting or whipped cream.  We thought we were doing to wrong, but continued.  Finally, it "broke" and started to separate.  At this point, put a towel OVER your mixer!  (It splashes everywhere!)

When the liquid started to separate, we used a spatula to scrape the side of the bowl and mixed it for a few more seconds and then it completely separated.  You could visibly see the butter and buttermilk separated. 

We poured the buttermilk off and put it into a mason jar for later use.  (You can keep the buttermilk in the refrigerator for 72 hours.)   

I formed the butter into a ball and squeezed the remaining buttermilk out.  (If you don't squeeze the buttermilk out of the butter then it will turn rancid within a few days.)  

In the end the butter looked like this:

If you haven't tried to make butter on your own, give it a try.  It tastes so much better then the butter you buy in the store and it is super easy to make.  If you have any questions, feel free to ask!  Laura Ingalls I will never be, but my mother's daughter and my uncle's niece?!  Making butter just sealed my fate!  


  1. It looks like whipped cream before breaking because that is exactly what it is! I always make whipped cream by hand, whisking it until it forms stiff peaks, but before it starts turning to butter. I have, on occasion, over mixed it a bit and caused it to start turning to butter.

    Did you wash your butter? You need to wash it out really well to get all of the butter milk out, otherwise it will get rancid. Then, add the salt at the end.

  2. I had no idea what it takes to make butter! I always stop at the whipped cream step (as this is one of my all time weaknesses). Now I know where Buttermilk comes from! Haha.

    1. My next adventure is whipped cream again. I was concentrating so hard on my butter process that I sort of ignored the whipped cream stage. Thanks for stopping by!