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Did you know that butter has was first referenced over 4,500 years ago on a limestone tablet? Ancient Romans used it as a beauty enhancer for the skin and for the hair to make it shine.
I surely didn’t know this and so much more about something so easy to make as butter. Of course, in ancient times, it was a different process than it is today with technology assisting.
Judges 5:25 even mentions butter “He asked for water; she gave him milk. She brought him curdled milk in a majestic bowl.” Also, even Isaiah in the Bible is giving a prophecy about Jesus and that “by the time he learns to reject what is bad and choose what is good, he will be eating butter and honey” (Isaiah 7:15)
I’m researching and find how some made butter way back then, and I have to admit, I get a picture in my mind and I find it hilarious! Picture this: fresh milk in a goatskin that is attached to the top of a tent pole and swung around.
Even the Irish was adding garlic to their butter, they made huge quantities, placed them in wooden containers and buried them in the peat bogs to age. Are you serious? Well, it must have been wonderful because it was shipped all over and traded for other things. Butter was actually a traded commodity, it was precious, it was prized.
As for nutrition, commercial butter has added enhancers, such as annatto for yellow coloring. The cream used has been pasteurized, or heated to very high temperatures, before using.
Jersey cows produce the best milk, but if you can’t find one or find any fresh milk, the next best is non-ultra heat cream.
So, what else can you use butter for? Flavored butters! Yummy! The bonus from making butter? Fresh buttermilk that is unlike anything you’ll find in the store. The other bonuses of making your own butter is saving money and better nutrition. Butter is much better for your health than margarine.
So, you see, something as simple as butter, God provided what was needed. He thought of everything, no detail was missed. We know that honey was nutritious, and yet, God had it paired with butter. An unlikely combination for eating, it seems, but it was evidently very nutritious for the body. Amazing!
So, let’s get to the recipe!
I usually use a blender, but since our sons bought me a Kitchenaid mixer, I use that, it’s alot faster spin than regular mixers. If you don’t have a Kitchenaid mixer, use a blender, or like we used to do when we were kids, a quart jar with lid. Seriously, we did! Of course, it was not something that we jumped up and down and said “Me, me, me! I want to make butter!” It was one of those things, Mom said, “Here’s your jar, here’s yours, here’s yours, start shaking!” That method will literally take 30-45 minutes to make butter.
So, in the interest of time, we will use the mixer. Put cream in mixer with whip attachment, add salt and turn it on low until the cream starts to thicken, then turn it up, eventually turning to high. It will take about 10 minutes to make.
You will see the cream go from whipped cream to something grainy but still white. Keep going, it’s making butter. Stop the machine and check it out, try to grab a little with your fingers, it will not hold up. It’s not done yet. Scrape sides down.
I like to finish off my butter in a quart jar, that’s just me. When I see that the butter is holding together alot better and there’s some whey in the bottom, I’ll go ahead and scoop into a quart jar, put a lid on it and give it about 20 good shakes to finish it off.
Put a strainer over a bowl, then put cheesecloth in the strainer. Pour all into the cheesecloth, the buttermilk will go into the bowl underneath to be saved for cooking or drinking. Yummy!
Gather upsides of cheesecloth to completely enclose butter. You can see that it’s in chunks. Now, what you’re going to do is turn on cold water and run over the cheesecloth, squeezing, for about 30 seconds. Open up cheesecloth and remove the butter, it will be one big block and will have a light yellow natural coloring from the fat content. The richer the cream, the more yellow it will be.
Squeeze butter while holding under the cold water, pressing, kneading the butter. Do this for about 3 minutes or until there is clear water droplets showing when you squeeze the butter after you remove from under the faucet. Mold into whatever shape you want. I usually break it up into 2 or 3 sections, depending on how much butter there is, then wrap in waxed paper. Refrigerate if you’ll use within 3 weeks, or freeze.
That’s it, very simple. And, the cost? Usually about $1.50 per pound of butter if you have to buy the cream. Recipe is below and you can print it out if you want.
What are your thoughts on making butter? Even if you have limited cooking skills, you can make butter. I can tell you that people are shocked and excited at the same time when you tell them.