Saturday, March 12, 2011

Making Butter

Cream from 2 gallons of raw milk.
Nothing says homemade like fresh butter. And the great thing about butter is that it's so easy to make.  Most of the materials needed for making butter are things that you probably already have about the kitchen.

Glass Jars w/lids
small sterilized marble (optional)
slotted spoon
fresh cream, we get our raw milk from some Amish in the area.  The prices are usually lower than in the grocery store.

I let my cream set out until it is room temperature.  This is called ripening.  Membranes holding fat crystals form around the fat globules.  When you shake the cream (also known a shearing), these membranes break and the fat crystals join together.  The more you shake, the more they separate from the water and protein.  Eventually, the fat will form a large clump of butter.  I'll bet you didn't know that butter making could be considered a science.  Now for anyone sitting there scratching their head, wondering what on earth I just said, I'll put it in easy step-by-step directions.

1.  Let your cream come to room temperature.  Sometimes I let it set out up to 12 hours.
2. Fill a glass jar 1/3 of the way full with cream.
3. If you have a sterilized marble you can add it to the cream.  This will speed up the process, but it is not necessary.
4.  Make sure the lid is tight, and shake like crazy.  I love this part because it is a great workout.  Who needs a Shake-weight, when you can make butter.
1/2 lb. of butter!!
5.  Depending on how hard you are shaking and the temperature of your cream, butter will start to form after almost 10 min. of shaking.   You will know its done when the weight inside the jars feels more solid (I am not sure how else to explain this, but you will understand once you experience it), and the liquid doesn't cling to the sides as much.  Don't be afraid to stop and open the jar to check the progress.
6.  Once your cream has separated into butter and buttermilk, you can use a spoon to remove it from the jar.  Place it into a bowl to rinse.
7.  Drain off any excess buttermilk and add some room temperature water.  Using the spoon, stir the water around in the butter, then drain.  Repeat this process until the water is clear.  You don't want any buttermilk left in your butter or it will go rancid.
8.  I store my butter in a covered container in the fridge, or if I am sure that I rinsed it really good, on the counter. 

And now you know how to make butter.  Don't you feel so much smarter?!

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2 comments:

  1. I'm on it...I have what I took out yesterday and I will let it set out to room temp...I'll get back with you on the progress. thank you..

    ReplyDelete

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