Sunday, April 25, 2010

Homemade Cultured Butter (With Stewart's Dairy!)

If you remember, I made some homemade butter quite awhile ago (and made a lil' bacon butter out of it too). This is kind of a de riguer thing to do as per the food internets lately, and if you have tried the popular recipes you might have found the results come out a little flat in flavor. Most of us like our butter with some tang. Simply beating the hell out of cream in a processor (consult original post) just doesn't do the trick. The idea of home cultured butter popped into my mind and I thought I was being all original. But alas, there are lots of others doing this out there in blogland (even Ruhlman). The process I used is similar to Ruhlman's, but I thought I would share anyhow in case you might not have caught that article.

I started with the above pictured dairy products care of Stewart's. The whole milk is there just because I needed whole milk, it is not involved in this recipe. Weren't we arguing about cream with added ingredients a while ago? I don't remember, but luckily Stewart's cream is just cream.

I threw the half pint of cream in a dish with a few tablespoons of buttermilk for about 12 hours at room temp, you could just as easily use plain yogurt. Anything with a live culture. The result will be slightly thickened and smell a little tangy/cheesy, I won't get into the chemistry as I am sure there are others who have explained the processes more eloquently elsewhere.

Dump this in your processor and hit it until you hear a wet splooshy sound. At which point it should look like this.

If you are going to salt the butter (I don't) this would be the time to do it. Remove the solids to a strainer with some cheese cloth and squeeze out the remaining liquid.

That is pretty much all she wrote. You are left with a glob of cultured butter of a sort. I store mine in the ol' butter bell.

This whole process produces a fresh and tasty product. Fancy, cultured butter is the new thing out there and being able to produce a fairly suitable facsimile is a good skill to have. The beauty is (as with a lot of home production) that the quality of the end result is only limited by the quality of the ingredients you start with. In any event, making your own butter gives a sense of accomplishment. You have mastered fat, you have become a butter fat master. Go forth and slather!



  1. This beats the hell out of the heavy cream in a soda bottle with a marble technique I used as a kid.

    Although in retrospect, for kids it's a great idea since it times them up for seemingly ever.

    I'll give the cultured butter a whirl. That's the best part about unsalted butter - the tanginess. Especially after reading about the preservatives often found in unsalted butter lately. I just want my butter as butter. So I'll start with cream.

  2. I'm a lazy ass, I just do the heavy cream in the food processor and I like it. I guess culture isn't that important to me. Guess I could probably make fun of myself there, but that's too easy.

    Now you've made butter, what's next? Cheese? I just made homemade ricotta that's ridiculously easy. I could see making it often because it's so delicious.


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