Tuesday, May 4, 2010

It's Like Butta

The other day, we decided to try our hand at making butter (I have lots more milk related topics so hang tight!).

I figured that I'd torture the boys a bit and make them "shake" the cream into butter, but that soon turned monotonous and I was wondering how long before someone busted their front tooth with a jar lid to the mouth! (I would have taken a picture of the boys, but our kitchen looked like a dirty bomb went off in it...not the nuclear kind...but...the boys might qualify as biological warfare!)

This is what about a 1/2 of a pint of cream looks like all shook up. It was frothy, but not even close to whipped cream....so, I took matters into my own hands and whipped out the immersion blender (food processors work great for this, but I don't own one)
Shoosh away.....

~first you'll get whipped cream (if you have strawberries, just add a bit of sugar to it and go for it..you can make butter another day!)
~then it will go into this funky "it looks like whipped cream, but tastes like butter" stage (anyone else done this by accident!?!)
~Finally you'll get something that looks like this: See how the milk solid and liquid have separated? I think I went a smidge longer after this point, just for kicks.

Strain your solid/liquid into a clean bowl....you'll have butter in the mesh strainer and....you guessed it...butter milk in the bowl. I might be a total dunce but I never made the connection between butter and butter milk before this(slapping my forehead in amazement!)

If you read up on butter making, they'll tell you to squeeze the milk out of the butter. You do this by "washing" the butter in clean cold water, squeeze the butter, wash, squeeze, wash, squeeze....UGH...are you fed up yet? So here's the trick I learned at my yogurt class the other morning: put the butter back in the bowl (or food processor) with about a 1/2 cup clean water....pulse it a couple of times...strain (into a different bowl than your buttermilk!)...repeat until the water comes out clear. (milk liquid in your butter makes it go bad quicker, so try really hard to get it as clear as possible) I think I did the repeat about 5 times.

Now just shape into a ball and you've got butter! Of course, you can work in some salt or other flavoring (honey butter sounds wonderful!) by pulsing it a couple of times without the water.

We totally cheated by making banana bread at the same time (we had gotten a terrible bunch from the store and I needed to use them up before they spoiled...sounds good to me, totally justified...right?!?)

OH MAN! I can't even begin to describe how yummy this was!!! Give it a try....the whole thing maybe took us 20 min! If you're going all crazyon this and plan on storing it...weigh it out into 1/4 lb balls and freeze :)


Jennifer Juniper said...

I should try this with my boys! I can't remember when or why I did this before, but I remember doing it and being amazed!

Debbie said...

What a cool project to do with kids! Are you homeschooling? We made butter several years ago at a dairy exhibit. That banana bread looks so good!

jmquilts said...

This is totally amazing!! The whole washing it off is not processing but I'll believe you. ;)

I'm surprised it only took 20 mins.

Way... cool!!

Michelle said...

Yum! When I was in 1st or 2nd grade, 100 years ago, we made butter by shaking the jar. I remember it took a long time. I don't remember rinsing anything, but I do remember eating it with saltine crackers!

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Wow! That is SO Ma Ingalls of you! And I've never even made ice cream, so I confess to being intimidated by making butter!

shelly said...

Joyce, the washing is pretty easy. you just have to go for it--I was super hesitant to add water to it, but the buter and water stay seperated, it just mixes with the milk liquid (kind of like oil and water don't mix)...I'll explain more tonight at small group ;)

Courtney Walsh said...

oh wow. have i ever told you about my aversion to butter. the "shaping it into a ball" thing would be the death of me. i can't even touch it!!

lol My name's courtney and i'm afraid of butter.

shelly said...

Ha Courtney! You crack me up!!! (Riley fell asleep while I was reading one of their chapter books and my laugh just woke him up!). Just think of it as a therapy for soft hands! Couldn't get better at Weis Morris ;)