Monday, April 2, 2012


butter (11)
It’s certainly not hard to make butter, especially with the modern equipment that exists in most kitchens nowadays.  (Some brave and hardy people eschew electrical appliances and churn their own butter by hand.  Me, I’m a modern girl.  I used my KitchenAid mixer.)

Homemade butter tastes fresh and buttery.   Of course, if you can get your hands on organic raw cream from grass-fed cows, your butter will be the ultimate.  I used grocery-store organic cream.  Unfortunately it’s been ultra-pasteurized.  (Translation:  it’s dead, they took the life out of it.)  But, hey, at least it tastes good. 
I paid $3.99 for one pint of cream.  This yielded 6 ounces of butter and a little over 8 ounces of buttermilk (not cultured buttermilk – it’s closer to whole milk in taste).  The net cost of the butter equated to $10.64 per pound, with the milk as a bonus.  Nonorganic would, of course, be cheaper.  Being honest here, I can buy organic butter made from the milk of grass-fed cows for about half that price at the Greenville Fresh Market.  Locally, Kerry Gold butter, though not organic, is made from the milk of grass-fed cows.

Bottom line:  It may be worth making your own butter if you ardently care about the freshness factor.  It’s especially worth it if you can obtain organic raw cream since there is no grocery-store equivalent.  It may also be worth it if you get a good sale price on cream, but it would have to be really cheap.  Making butter is a simple but slightly greasy, messy project.   I enjoyed doing it, though I doubt very much if I’ll ever repeat it.  I’m just reporting – you decide.  Is it worth it for you?

Homemade Butter
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Pour 1 pint heavy whipping cream (preferably not pasteurized, or at least not ultra-pasteurized) into bowl of stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.  Start mixer on low, gradually increasing speed to medium high.  butter (2)It will take about six minutes for the cream to thicken.
butter (6) 
It will take about seven minutes for the cream to get to soft-peak stage.
butter (3) At about eight minutes, the cream will deflate and start to solidify.
butter (4) Then the lcream will start to separate, and the solid pieces will turn yellowish. 
butter (7)
Pour the solids and liquid through several thicknesses of cheesecloth over a measuring cup.  
butter (8)  Squeeze the cheesecloth to form the butter into a ball and to get more liquid out.  Then put
the butter back into the mixer.  It doesn’t look like much at this point.
butter (10) 
But it will soon whip up nicely.  If you want salted butter, this is when to add the salt.  Not too much, try 1/8 tsp.  Salt will help preserve the butter and also accent the flavor.
butter (5)
Form the butter into a ball and refrigerate, covered.  I can't tell you how long it will last since I divided mine in 6 equal pieces, 1 ounce each and wrapped them in plastic wrap.  (1 ounce of butter=2 Tbsp.)  They went into the freezer. 

You can drink the milk, if you want.  It tastes like whole milk. 
butter (9) 
I separated mine into two containers, each holding four ounces, and froze them.  I’ll use the milk in baking. 


Food, Fun and Life in the Charente said...

My Mum used to have a couple of jersey cows back in the 50's and 60's Wow was that fantastic butter that she used to make :) Diane

Valerie said...

What a great idea, Judy! Everything is better when it's made from scratch.

Judy said...

Diane, I would love to have a couple cows in my backyard. I can only imagine how great that butter was -- and the milk too.

Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

I am very impressed Judy. I had no idea you could make your own butter so easily.

Rita said...

WOW! I am impressed!

Denise said...

I could kick myself for shunning all the free or mostly free farm products available when I was a kid growing up for the prepared supermarket goodies. Everyone should make butter once though. Yours looks delicious!

Magic of Spice said...

Looks fantastic! I really love making butter at home :)