Sunday, January 6, 2013

Easy Homemade Butter

Homemade Butter and Butter Knife on Black Acrylic

The Best Thing for Your Morning Toast since Sliced Bread

Everyone knows butter.  It’s that great tasting stuff we spread on toast and dinner rolls.  Or whip into mashed potatoes to make them particularly scrumptious.  Or beat into icing to top the perfect cake.

But make your own?  Come on, you must be kidding.  Everyone knows you buy it at the supermarket, where you find it packed in neat rectangular boxes.  The ones that contain 4 quarter-pound sticks wrapped in waxed paper or foil.  Or if you want to go upscale, you buy those ½ pound slabs of European (or “European-style”) butter that cost twice as much as the standard supermarket stuff, in return for better flavor.

Anyway, don’t you need a churn to make butter?  You know, liked they used in Little House on the Prairie?  Who has one of those?

Well, good news.  You don’t need a churn.  If you have a mixer (or blender or food processor), you can make your own butter in no more than 20 minutes.  It’s quick and easy!  And when it comes to flavor, homemade crushes even the best and fanciest store-bought premium butters.

Best of all?  You don’t even need your own cow.


Homemade Butter on Breakfast Toast

Recipe:  Homemade Butter

If you’ve ever made whipped cream and overbeat it — resulting in a curdled mess — you were halfway to making your own butter.  If you whip cream long enough (essentially churning it), you’ll cause the fat globules in the cream to clump together and separate from the remaining liquid (“buttermilk”).  So making butter is really a twofer:  You get both homemade butter and homemade buttermilk.
 
Fresh, organic cream is ideal for making butter.  But I just use the regular heavy cream (not the ultra-pasteurized stuff) that I find in the supermarket.  For the best deal, I buy it in quart containers (much cheaper than those little 8-ounce jobs).  Because you get both butter and buttermilk from your cream, you actually end up saving a bit of money by making your own.

This recipe is as old as, well, butter:  You just agitate cream until it curdles.  You can use a churn, a mixer, or even pour the cream into a jar and shake it. Do a Google search and you’ll find lots of recipes, all virtually identical. The one I found most useful is from a July 1, 2007 article in the New York Times Magazine by Daniel Patterson, which I used as the source for my recipe.

You can use any quantity of cream to make butter, but it’s easiest (and most efficient) to use a quart or more. For this recipe, I used one quart (4 cups) of cream; many recipes suggest 6 cups. One quart of cream yields about 13 ounces of butter, and about 2 cups of buttermilk. Butter is easiest to make in a stand mixer (see Notes for other methods). Total preparation time is maybe 20 minutes.

Well-wrapped butter will stay fresh in your refrigerator for a week or two, and in your freezer for at least a month (see Notes for more info). Buttermilk will stay fresh for about a week; I’ve never tried freezing it.

Ingredients
  • 1 quart heavy cream (4 cups; preferably regular heavy cream, not ultra-pasteurized — see Notes)
  • salt to taste (optional)
Homemade Butter on Breakfast Toast
Butter ready to be drained (left) and after kneading (right)


Procedure
  1. Pour cream into the bowl of a stand mixer, and let sit for about half an hour to warm (you can make butter when the cream is at any temperature, but it works best when it’s about 50 degrees F).
  2. Attach the bowl to your mixer (using the splatter guard, if you have one).  
  3. Attach the wire whip, and place some plastic wrap over the top of the mixer (liquid buttermilk will splatter out of the bowl once the butter forms).
  4. Turn the mixer on to medium-high, and beat the cream.  It will form soft peaks, then stiff peaks.  Then it will turn a yellowish color and begin to form little granules (which may become as big as pebbles, and will probably start clumping together).  You’ll know when the cream has curdled and the butter is ready:  The wire whip will kick up droplets of buttermilk, which will splatter against the plastic wrap that you placed over the mixer (you did use plastic wrap, didn’t you?).  When this starts to happen, turn off the mixer.  This whole process usually takes 5 to 10 minutes.
  5. Set a large fine-mesh strainer (in a pinch, you can use a colander with small holes) over a bowl, and dump the contents of the mixer into the strainer.  Allow the buttermilk to drain into the bowl for a minute or so.
  6. Leaving the butter in the strainer, use your hands to “work” (squeeze and knead) it for 5 to 10 minutes.  This process will squeeze out every last drop of buttermilk and concentrate the butter’s flavor.  (Doing this in the strainer allows the excess buttermilk to drain directly into the buttermilk bowl).  You’ll know you’re done when you’re no longer expelling buttermilk, and the texture of the butter becomes dense and, well, buttery.  (Some people like to rinse butter in cold water before kneading; I don’t, but see Notes.)
  7. Put the buttermilk into an airtight container and refrigerate (but take a sip first; this is some of the best tasting buttermilk you’ll ever have). 
  8. If you want to salt your butter (I don’t), add salt to taste — start with ½ teaspoon of kosher or sea salt, and knead into the butter.  Taste, and add more if necessary, kneading it in.
  9. Transfer the butter to an airtight container (I often roll it into logs in a sheet of shrink wrap) and refrigerate or freeze.

Notes
  • You can also make butter in a food processor (the plastic blade works better than metal) or a blender (in which case, use only about 2 cups of cream; a quart will be too much unless the bowl of your blender is large).  Or you can use a hand mixer (watch out for flying buttermilk at the end).  If you have strong wrists, you can even put the cream into a mason jar and shake it until the butterfat congeals and separates from the buttermilk.  But using a stand mixer is the easiest way.
  • I have not made butter with ultra-pasteurized cream.  But from what I’ve read, regular heavy cream (usually 40% butterfat) yields a slightly better tasting result, and the butter forms a bit quicker.  But ultra-pasteurized should work if that's all you can find.
  • If any buttermilk remains in the butter, it can cause the butter to go rancid after a couple of weeks.  For that reason, some people (and most commercial butter makers) rinse their butter before kneading.  If you wish to do so, here’s how:  At the beginning of Step 5, remove the strainer from the bowl.  Refrigerate the buttermilk.  Then place the “pebbles” of butter in a large bowl filled with cold water, and begin kneading the butter.  As you do so, the fresh water will help dilute and remove the buttermilk.  Change the water once, and then remove the butter (it should be almost ready by this time).  Knead on a hard surface until it becomes, well, butter.
  • Rinsing will help the butter stay fresh longer.  But here at Kitchen Riffs central, we go through the butter so fast (and freeze whatever we don't immediately use) that for us this is a moot point. 
  • The “buttermilk” you buy at the supermarket is cultured — meaning it’s not a byproduct of butter making.  It doesn’t taste nearly as good as what you’ll be making. 
  • It’s traditional to use wooden paddles for kneading and shaping butter.  Using these keeps your hands cleaner, and they make it easier to form the butter into rectangular blocks.  The paddles generally have one grooved side, so you can also impart a nice groovy surface to your butter if you wish.  I’m fine with using my hands to shape butter, but the wooden paddles are a cool kitchen gadget.
  • If you really get into butter making, you might want to start investigating sources of locally produced cream.  Vendors at farmers’ markets sometimes sell organic cream of high quality.  The better the cream, the better your butter.
  • That’s partly because the diet of the cows that produce the cream can affect the flavor of the butter.  Butter from France’s Normandy region is considered to be some of the best, reportedly because of the grass their cows eat. 
Homemade Butter on Knife, and Packed into Ramekin


No More Store-Bought Butter!

“So what prompted you to make butter?” asked Mrs. Kitchen Riffs, slathering a second slice of toast (made from her No-Knead Bread).

“Well,” I answered, “remember when we visited the new location of Niche Restaurant? And they served us their aged homemade butter?”  (Niche is a nice local restaurant.  If you ever visit St Louis, it’s well worth checking out.)

“Yeah, that whole meal was great,” Mrs K R answered, half-gazing into the distance as she remembered the occasion.  “But you’re right — the butter was a standout.”

“Anyway, that got me thinking about making butter.  I remembered reading about it some time ago.  But until I started making our own, I had no idea how easy it was.  Or how tasty.”

“This is definitely better than anything we buy at the store,” Mrs K R said.  “And the color is beautiful — such a gorgeous yellow!”

She took another bite, chewing thoughtfully.  “You know, once I learned how easy it was to bake our own bread — and how good it was — we haven’t bought bread since,” she said.

I could see the wheels turning in her head.  Finally, she added, “This is some really nice butter you’ve made here.  And easy too, huh?”

I can take a hint.

You may also enjoy reading about:
No Knead Bread
Baking Powder Biscuits
Pancakes
French Toast
Fried Eggs
Hard-Boiled Eggs

116 comments:

  1. I never new making butter could be this easy!
    I am not sure I can find regular cream, everything in stores is ultra-pasteruized.
    Looking forward to making and tasting homemade butter :) thank you for the inspiration

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    1. Hi Sawsan, it's ridiculously easy to make your own butter! I don't know why it took me so long. The ultra-pasteurized cream should work if you can't find the regular. Have fun! Thanks for the comment.

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    2. Hi to everyone ..just wanted to add ,when I was about 12 my mom asked me to whip the whipping cream , so of course I did ..well didn't know how all ..lol it didn;t take long before I saw all this liquid and this yellish peaces lol I was makeing butter and didn, know it ..I think it just was cream in those little cartons ..lets just say guess my mom didn' think it was butter and buttermike and so she dumped it in the garbage can .. but now I know and just found this tonitght .. Guss what I am doing tomorow .I think I will go to a farm and get some cream ..thank you very much and good luck to you all ..

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    3. Hi Gloria, I think a lot of people have made butter (and buttermilk) by mistake, and didn't know what they had on their hands! Great story. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  2. What fun! And a great way to start off all those new year's resolutions but what the heck!When my kids were little they always made butter at pioneer camp and then we were the beneficiaries of it. You are right. It is good!

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    1. Hi Abbe, think of it this way: this is so tasty, you'll use less. ;-) Yeah, right. Thanks for your comment.

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  3. Have you been in my kitchen; staring over my shoulder? Guess what I just recently made? Well, first it was goat cheese which I'm posting tomorrow and then my daughter and I decided to make butter. Oh my good isn't it.

    One of my biggest things lately though? I made my own English muffin bread. I am loving those for breakfast with homemade butter.

    I didn't know you were in St. Louis. I grew up there and family is still there. Grew up in Florissant but lived in Kirkwood before moving to NC and then CO where I am now. I hear the food scene is great though I love cooking at home for friends so much I never get much into any food scene!

    As someone I know might say? Good stuff. :)

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    1. Hi Barb, small world! I lived in Florissant is the 60s, and then in Glendale. I just returned to STL a few years ago after being away for decades. Anyway, sounds like our kitchens are soulmates! Is your English muffin bread the James Beard recipe? I've got that on my list of stuff to make someday (will be awhile). Thanks for the comment.

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  4. I am laughing because through the post I kept thinking I would never go back to regular store bought butter; and then I read Mrs. Riff's comments. Love it! I agree if you bake the bread you have to have the homemade butter! This looks and sounds delicious. Your photography is incredible.

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    1. Hi Judy, this really is so easy - and tasty - you'll stop buying store bought. Except maybe for baking, where the flavor disappears a bit. Thanks for the kind words, and the comment.

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  5. Oh John, you turned some wheels in my head too, the memory wheel to be specific. My grandmother had the churn, and we, my brother and I, were fighting over it! Everyone wanted to be the only person in charge of the butter churn. Great memories...
    And yes, there's nothing better than homemade anything, including butter. :)

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    1. Hi Marina, my wife has made butter in a churn, too, when she was a tad! The mixer is easier. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  6. I have always wondered about making my own butter - Great job!

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    1. Hi CJ, it's a lot of fun to make, and really good. You'll be amazed - and so will all of your friends! Thanks for the comment.

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  7. Fabulous tutorial!

    I used to get a gallon of raw milk every other week in my old CSA ... I would let it sit in the fridge overnight, then scrape off the cream that formed on top, and make butter with it ... so, so, so delicious!

    I am going to try your method this week! Thanks!

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    1. Hi Kimberly, that raw milk must have been bliss! As is the flavor of freshly made butter. Thanks for the comment.

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  8. What a fantastic pictorial my friend this is SO awesome :)
    Your butter looks heavenly!

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru
    Happy new year!

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    1. Hi Uru, the butter tastes much better than it looks! Happy New Year, and thanks for commenting.

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  9. The last time I made butter was with my kids in elementary school when they were studying frontier days. I've never made it this way though. I'm excited to try this. How fun to be able to whip it up so quickly and in any flavor or variety I want. I don't know why I never thought to do this. Thanks for sharing this John.

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    1. Hi Vicki, the mixer method is really easy - you'll have a great time doing this. Thanks for the comment.

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  10. This is a 2-in-1 for me, since buttermilk is so hard to find over here.

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    1. Hi Alex, you'll love the buttermilk - it's flavor is so much better than the commercial stuff, at least the commercial stuff in the US. Thanks for the comment.

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  11. I make butter all the time - regular unsalted, salted, with herbs, with garlic. It takes 2 minutes in my thermomix and the butter tastes so good. Since we make it all the time, I do rinse it because taking out all the buttermilk makes the butter last longer. I pour off the buttermilk and use that and then rinse in ice water and then rinse my hands in ice water so I don't melt the butter and then I squeeze.

    Your butter looks so good!

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    1. Hi Maureen, I really wish they sold those Thermomix machines in the US! They sound awesome. I should probably try rinsing the butter, although I really divide it into small portions, and freeze what we're not using immediately, so we haven't had a problem. Thanks for the comment.

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  12. My father grew up on a property and it was his job every morning at 5am to get up, milk the cow, separate the cream and churn the butter - he's been wanting to buy his own butter ever since! I think I've almost made butter many times. Somehow I didn't realise that the liquid is buttermilk. Great looking homemade butter and I will try this xx

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    1. Hi Charlie, if you do that everyday, that's work! This is fun to try, and the flavor is excellent - worth doing. Thanks for the comment.

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  13. My grandparents made their own butter...and I've been wanting to follow in their footsteps for some time now. I just pulled out a batch of homemade rolls, and this butter would go perfectly with it. Thank you for sharing...what a nice way to end my weekend (and get ready for dinner!) I hope you have a wonderful week!

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    1. Hi Monet, homemade rolls (or bread) and your own butter is such a great (and tasty!) combo. I'll bet you'll enjoy making it. Thanks for the comment.

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  14. This is impressive!

    I read about this before but didn't have the guts to try making my own butter. Sometimes, I use a lot of butter for baking and wonder if I can keep up the production for my extensive usage. After reading my comment, I think you will call me a "chicken"... LOL!

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    1. Hi Zoe, I think it's definitely worth trying to make your own butter! But for baking I suspect we may buy butter, too - but not for things (like croissants) where the butter flavor is so upfront. Thanks for the comment.

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  15. I've been to restaurants that serve their own house-made butter with bread. It's amazing how much fresher it tastes. And the consistency is so creamy. Gotta try this in my own kitchen now. ;)

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    1. Hi Carolyn, isn't the freshly made stuff wonderful? This is easy - you'll have a great time making your own butter. Thanks for the comment.

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  16. This is amazing! I would love to make my own butter but have never really looked into it before. I can only imagine how much better this tastes than store-bought crap. Good job!

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    1. Hi Natalie, this is so easy - it's amazing. And the flavor is quite good - you'll enjoy. Thanks for the comment.

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  17. Wow, I can't believe how easy it is to make! I am envisioning all kinds of herb infusions. This is being added to my "to make" list!

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    1. Hi Alyssa, herb infusions would be good. ;-) One of these days I'll be talking about compound butters. But the basic butter? Bliss. Thanks for the comment.

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  18. Cool - okay so I'm making it too if only to get that buttermilk! Very nice --

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    1. Hi Alanna, I think you'll love this! You've forgotten more about buttermilk than I'll ever know, but the buttermilk is so good. You're a wizard with buttermilk, so I'm really eager to hear what you can do with this. Thanks for commenting.

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  19. I so need to make this, I am so excited you shared this recipe!!! I actually have a sign up in my kitchen that reads "I believe in the unparalleled power of butter!" I love how easy it is to make my most favorite condiment:-) Thank you so much for sharing, Take care, Terra

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    1. Hi Terra, you really do need to make this. ;-) This is such a simple - and reasonably economical - recipe that you'll be wondering where homemade butter was all your life. Thanks for the comment.

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  20. I have always, always always wanted to try making butter at home--thank you so much for sharing this, this will be a revolution in the kitchen for sure! Do you *always* make your butter at home now? It must taste so fresh!

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    1. Hi Ala, this is totally worth doing. And yes, we're making most of our butter for table use now. For baking? We're still buying some store stuff. I think it'll largely be our own in the future (for sure for table use), but we'll see. Thanks for the comment.

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  21. A great, informative post, John. I consider butter to have been my "gateway" process. Once I learned how to do it, I soon thereafter made my first batch of ricotta cheese -- and that was only the beginning of my cheese making. Now I make butter before the holidays for my Christmas baking and holiday dinners. You really cannot beat the creaminess of homemade butter.

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    1. Hi John, interesting that butter was your gateway process. I haven't done cheese yet, but I plan to this year. So much good stuff to make, so little time! Thanks for the comment.

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  22. wow this is amazing! home made butter! thanks for sharing!

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    1. Hi Juliana, isn't this a fun recipe? And incredibly good stuff, too! Thanks for the comment.

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  23. So easy to make and ever so tasty! I haven't made homemade butter since a while.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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    1. Hi Rosa, this is totally delish. You probably need to make some again. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  24. Homemade bread and butter -- the essence of goodness right there. Great post, great food -- YUM!

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    1. Hi Judy, homemade bread and butter is one of those combos everyone should experience at least once. And I'll bet if you do it once, that won't be the last time! Thanks for the comment.

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  25. My Mother-in-law makes butter with her school kids (she teaches 1st grade) but I never really considered making my own at home. This is a great idea, though, especially if it saves a little money!

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    1. Hi Jen, it's really fun, easy, and tasty! Once you try it, you'll be hooked. Thanks for the comment.

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  26. I love the idea of making butter, and it sounds so easy. (Like you, I never worry about my butter staying around too long. Sigh.)

    By the way, one of these years my husband and I hope to make it to St. Louis to watch a ball game (or two). When we do, I'll definitely ask about restaurant recommendations!

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    1. Hi Beth, yeah, that whole disappearing butter thing can be kind of a bummer sometimes. ;-) Definitely let me know when you come to St. Louis - I'll have plenty of recommendations. And the Cards are a fun team to watch. Thanks for the comment.

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  27. I've wanted to make homemade butter for a super long time. Great post John! When I finally get around to it I'll have to come back and read your post again. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Hi Nancy, it's fun to make your own butter, and really easy. Once you do it, you'll wonder why it took you so long (at least that's what I thought). Thanks for the comment.

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  28. My kids all made butter in preschool...but I haven't! I think the hardest part will be finding no-ultrapasteurized cream...it's ALL over the place!

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    1. Hi Lizzy, the ultra-pasteurized cream should work, but from what I've read the regular is better (flavor, mainly). I'm lucky in that my market has both, although most of it is the ultra stuff. Thanks for the comment.

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  29. So interesting John, I never thought in making my own butter and I could not stop laughing when you mention that "we do not need our own cow for it" :)
    You sure make it sound so easy...therefore I will need to give a try one of this day.
    Happy 2013 and have a great week ahead!

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    1. Hi Juliana, not needing your own cow is certainly a relief! ;-) This really is a easy recipe - you'll have fun trying it. Thanks for the comment.

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  30. I was brought up on a farm where we churned the cream to make butter so this is very familiar to me. I really must start doing it again - for the satisfaction factor.

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    1. Hi Suzanne, this really is satisfying! Tasty, too, as you know since you've had homemade. Thanks for the comment.

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  31. I remember my mom talking about when she was a kid that they made their own butter on the farm. I guess I never thought about making my own butter. It does sound really tasty.

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    1. Hi Dawn, probably you'll amaze everyone if you make your own! Worth it for that reason alone. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  32. What a grand idea! It's so simple but so overlooked. I actually have an old time butter churn. It's a large glass container with a lid that has a paddle attached on the inside and a handle on the outside. You just turn it, and turn it, and turn it and turn it some more - I think I like your 21st century version much better. I'm going to make it for my next dinner party, THANKS!

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    1. Hi Chris, this really is one of those kind of obvious things, but it took me forever to decide to make my own. I know it was easy, but I didn't realize how easy it actually was (using the mixer certainly helps). You'll wow your guests at your next dinner party! Thanks for the comment.

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  33. I am going to the farmer's market this weekend and seeing what they have in hand. I will definitely use this recipe to make my own butter. Thanks for sharing all the tips. We go through a lot of bread and butter, so I guess it is time to make our own :)

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  34. Hi Ilke, the only downside of making your own butter and baking your own bread is you'll probably go through even more. At least until the novelty wears off. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  35. I had never been so excited to click "read more...."! How interesting and fun! We love good bread, and we like to put good quality butter too. I like the idea of homemade butter and I seriously didn't know how easily butter can be made. I know my kids will be very excited with this "experiment" with me. And we get to eat at the end! ;)

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    1. Hi Nami, you and your kids are going to have a lot of fun! And you'll love the taste of the butter you'll be making. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  36. I've never made my own butter before, I have never even thought of doing it! Maybe I should, it doesn't look too hard. Yours looks so good!

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    1. Hi Ali, I had never really thought of it either, even though I was vaguely aware it wasn't a difficult process. And it turned out to be so easy, and so worth doing it! You'll enjoy your own butter - trust me. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  37. I love this! My mom taught us how to do this as a kid. It was so much fun. Now as a foodie, I'm more intrigued at the idea of making my own fresh butter. I'll be getting out my mixer for sure.

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    1. Hi Kristi, it's incredible how much fun it is to make your own butter. And satisfying! Really worth doing. Thanks for the comment.

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  38. Seriously I never tried making butter at home, you gave me and idea and a recipe. Thanks

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    1. Hi Raymund, so few of us have tried this! But it's not something that you think about doing, when it's so easy to buy it. Making your own is loads of fun - you'll enjoy. Thanks for the comment.

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  39. Great post John!! My grandmother had her own cows and churned her butter and churned enough to share with the whole family. I was in high school before I ever tasted margarine. YUK! So needless to say, we go through a lot butter, but I've never made it myself. I've got to try this out. To get a vat of butter and some buttermilk from one quart of cream - what a deal! Thanks!!!

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    1. Hi MJ, the taste of this will take you back to your youth! And I remember margarine - haven't had that for years (although when I was a tad my mom bought it all the time). Have fun! And thanks for the comment.

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  40. This is great, I never would have thought of trying to make my own butter at home! I will definitely have to try this one of these days and let you know :)

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    1. Hi Kristi, do let me know about your experience! And once you start making your own, you'll have to start researching recipes that use buttermilk - at least that's what we've been doing! Thanks for the comment.

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  41. Hey John!

    2in1 ~ homemade butter and more importantly for me ~ Buttermilk! costs a bomb in Malaysia! Thanks for the share!

    Happy New Year!

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    1. Hi Emily, the butter is wonderful; the buttermilk is fabulous! Best tasting buttermilk I've ever had - it's good enough to drink out of a cocktail glass! Thanks for your comment.

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  42. Loved it. I enjoyed the conversation of you and Mrs. riffs at the end of the post. Homemade butter is always so divine! I loved the stepwise recipe and the fact that "you don't need a cow" for this. LOL!

    Fabulous post!

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    1. Hi Purabi, yeah, it'd be a real bummer if we needed our own cows. ;-) Thanks for your kind words and your comment.

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  43. I've been dying to make butter for ages. It looks so easy, although I worry about getting all the buttermilk out of the butterfat so it doesn't go rancid.. Yours looks great!!

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    1. Hi Christine, this is a fun recipe to try. Rinse your buttermilk and it should be good for several weeks. I don't, and it keeps for a week or a bit more. However - and this is a big however - I portion it in fairly small quantities, and freeze what we won't use immediately, so that makes a difference. Thanks for the comment.

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  44. Yes yes yes! I want it!!!!!!!!! I love butter and a home one must be simply amazing.

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    1. Hi Marta, this would be terrific for one of your breakfasts! And it really is amazing. Thanks for your comment.

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  45. Give me more butter. Butter is flavor. I have made butter by accident, when I was in my apprentice ship in Germany and my boss didn't like it
    - understandably so - but I liked it ;-) Since then I'm always very careful when whipping cream. Great post.

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    1. Hi Frank, butter is so good, isn't it? I've never accidentally over-whipped cream, but it's always in the back of my mind that it's a concern. It's actually quite a kick to deliberately over-whip and watch what happens! Thanks for the comment.

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  46. This is amazing, I had no idea it was that easy.
    I may need a cow.

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    1. Hi teafordinner, we may all need cows. ;-) This really is easy, and so tasty. Thanks for the comment.

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  47. Dang you made your own butter. I'm thinking I have to try this soon. I always assumed it was much more work. I may have a problem eating way too much though if I made my own. Yours looks great.
    -Gina-

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    1. Hi Gina, this recipe is a ton of fun! If you can even call it a recipe. ;-) We eat too much butter too, but if you divvy it up into small portions and freeze most of it, that kinda sorta solves that problem. Kinda sorta. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  48. Very interesting post. I remember my grandmother making butter and we did learn to make our own in college time, but I have never remade any since. The other day we were actually thinking of making our own, since we couldn't find any unsalted butter here, and for bakeries unsalted is better (considering the Indian butter choice). I like the way you explained it makes it so simple and easy to understand. You inspired me, thank you!

    By the way I used to love watching Little House on the Prairie when I was a kid. ^.^

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    1. Hi Helene, glad you enjoyed the explanation! But making butter really is pretty simple - you just need to understand what's going on, then the whole process makes sense. Little House on the Prairie was great! Thanks for the comment.

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  49. Dude, seriously? You rock my world. This is amazing.

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    1. Hi Kim, ;-) This is really fun to do! Your own butter truly tastes better than almost any store bought, and the buttermilk bonus is awesome. Good stuff. ;-) Thanks for the comment.

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  50. WOW I am so looking forward to trying this. Thinking of all the money I could save by not having to buy butter ever again from the grocery store. I use butter a lot in my cooking. Thanks for sharing this with us!

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    1. Hi Brenda, it's so much fun to make your own butter, and the flavor is superb. Plus the bonus of the buttermilk? Gold! Thanks for the comment.

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  51. Lol If you are going to make this very often you will not want to use your food processor or mixer ! butter is very hard on the motor after a while. Invest in a cheap churn you will thank me later- 30 years on a farm

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    1. Hi Anonymous, good point that a wimpy mixer will have problems with this. But if you have a stand mixer that handles bread dough, butter is no problem. At least not in my experience. Thanks for the comment.

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  52. Hi! I really appreciate the tutorial of homemade butter. I never realized making butter was so easy. I tried it for the first time this afternoon. While the end result was delicious, I need to make a few notes.
    The beating of the cream with a mixer took 25 minutes before it curdled and changed to butter and buttermilk (your instructions say it only takes 5 to 10 minutes). Add in the kneading time, packaging up the final product and then cleanup, it was a solid hour to make 4 average-sized sticks of butter. One quart of non-organic heavy cream cost me $4.00 on sale. I can buy 4 sticks of organic butter (label says the only ingredient is cream) for just under $4.00 on sale. I'm really trying to purchase more organic products. The organic cream would have cost me almost $8.00 for a quart! It's far more economical to purchase the organic butter. Unfortunately this will probably end up being a fun activity for the kids to do a few times a year rather than a weekly source of our family's butter (and we go through A LOT! of butter). Just too time-consuming and not as cost effective as I hoped it would be. :( -- Tara

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    1. Hi Anonymous, thanks for the feedback! So interesting to hear that your mixer took that amount of time - usually when I make it it starts to curdle in 5 or 6 minutes, and I added some time there thinking that should be enough to cover most mixers. It didn't work for yours, so obviously I was wrong on that. :-( I agree this isn't the most economical way to obtain butter, but do remember you're also getting buttermilk - a highly useful thing in baking, in particular. We do buy butter for baking, but like this for table use (or if we run out, the European-style butters). Anyway, thanks so much for taking time to comment.

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    2. Hi KR, I used a hand mixer, maybe that is why it took so long! What do you use buttermilk for? I've never actually used it for anything before so I wasn't sure what to do with it. It did make quite a bit though. I did taste it but it was a little too buttery (lol) for drinking. Thanks for your reply. Sorry to be a downer on my previous comment. I really do appreciate the work you put into your tutorial and I had a fun time making the butter. - Tara

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    3. Oh, it was an electric hand mixer. I didn't mix it all by hand. :)

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    4. Hi Tara (sorry, didn't notice your name on the previous comment), a hand mixer would take some time! I'm glad you told me this - I was really wondering about how our times could have been so different. Buttermilk is great in baking. It's a classic in buttermilk biscuits and pancakes, for example, and there are all sorts of recipes that use it. Mrs KR uses it all the time. It's more acid than regular milk, so often you'll use just baking soda and not baking powder. And it can give things a slightly tangy texture. Very slightly! Look through a good baking book - you'll find some recipes that use it. And I really do appreciate your previous comment - I'm always happy to get feedback from people that make the recipes, so I know how to improve future ones. Thanks again.

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    5. Hi Tara, I assumed you meant an electric hand mixer. You could possibly make butter with a hand whisk, but I sure wouldn't want to try it!

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  53. So he could take part in making the Thanksgiving meal when he was a child, my son had the responsibility of making the butter. I poured whipping cream into a plastic Tupperware container with a cover. His job was to shake it until he had butter. It only took a few minutes.

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    1. What a fun idea! I'll bet your son really enjoyed helping out. And you're right, often shaking it is the quickest way, particularly when making small amounts. Thanks for the comment.

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  54. PS........I got the idea for my son when I over-whipped the cream one time to see what would happen.

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    1. Hi Jeanette, I'll bet most of us have over-whipped cream by mistake and ended up with butter! Thanks for commenting.

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  55. Fresh butter is always nice with homemade bread!

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    1. Hi Arthur, we just love homemade butter! Its flavor is wonderful, and the buttermilk tastes so much better than any store bought. Thanks for the comment.

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  56. I have a vita mix blender and I was wondering about how long would I have to blend to achieve the desired product?

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    1. Hi Denise, I haven't made this is a blender (Vitamix or otherwise) so I don't really have an answer for you. I'd think it'd be pretty quick, though. Maybe worth trying with a small amount of cream to see how it works? Let me know what happens! Thanks.

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