Homemade butter is easy and fun. You HAVE to try it. This simple recipe shows you how… with one ingredient in just 10 minutes.
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DON’T LOSE THIS RECIPE! PIN Homemade Butter FOR LATER…
The simplicity of homemade butter
The first time I made butter it was a revelation. Homemade butter it seems is incredibly easy. All you need is 10 minutes, one ingredient (double cream) and a decent mixer. Seriously… It puts all those lessons at primary school, shaking jars of creamy milk until our arms were numb to shame… Or was that just the bygone era I inhabited?
But this week and as it is a while since I made it, I decided some homemade butter would be a treat. And making it has given me an opportunity to update the post and recipe. And to play with flavourings too.
Read on to see my step by step guide to homemade butter and you too will be making it at home in no time…
What’s the point of making butter when I can buy it in the supermarket?
Okay… It’s a good question. But there are a few reasons why you may want to give homemade butter a go…
Making butter is FUN
The number one reason for making butter at home is that it’s FUN. The joy of watching the process is satisfying. Its lack of complication is also quite mesmerising… From liquid cream to butter block in the blink of an eye…
Homemade butter is educational
The first time we made butter at home was when Miss GF was still at primary school. It followed on from a foray into the scientific world of making honeycomb and was another opportunity to use the kitchen to learn.
At its basic level, making butter and buttermilk can be used to teach children about emulsion. Cream is a liquid oil-in-water emulsion. But when it is shaken, agitated or whisked (for long enough), the fat (oil) molecules get shaken out of place and clump together to form butter… And that just leaves the buttermilk behind.
Check this article for a more advanced explanation.
Homemade butter tastes great and is versatile
Maybe it’s just because you made it yourself, but homemade butter tastes amazing. The pleasure of eating this normally luxurious but unremarkable spread, knowing that it started as a simple pot of cream is just too exciting!
But when you make butter, you also have the ability to flavour it as an integrated part of the process… before it hardens. That leaves endless possibilities. From savoury (think chilli, garlic, herbs, seaweed… and that’s just for starters) to sweet (salted caramel, cacao, maple, honey and even cinnamon spice), the only limit is your creativity.
Making butter is cheaper
Homemade butter is actually cheaper than buying from the supermarket.
We worked out that from 600 ml double cream we got 11 oz (310g) butter and 250 ml buttermilk. That’s all for just £2.00 (your average 250g block of pure butter costs anywhere between £1.50 and £2.00 (2020 prices) plus an extra 70 pence for the buttermilk).
What to expect when making butter
Making butter is amazingly uncomplicated… but if you have never done it before, this is what you can expect.
As a caveat, the easiest way to make butter is using a good, high-powered stand mixer and a balloon whisk. I honestly love my Kitchen Aid mixer. It’s sturdy, speedy, solid and has lasted me for years. It has been worth every penny.
- Start with liquid cream.
- Whisk until it becomes whipped cream.
- Keep whisking and it will become ‘over-whipped’ cream and look like it’s beginning to curdle.
- All of a sudden, the cream will separate into butter and buttermilk and make a sloshing sound. At this point, make sure you turn down the mixer speed (unless you want buttermilk splattered round the kitchen).
- Thoroughly drain off the buttermilk using a sieve and jug. Save the buttermilk to use in cakes, scones, pancakes, banana bread, smoothies etc
- Give the butter a little squeeze to release any excess liquid, before shaping and chilling. If the butter softens too much when shaping, simply pop it in the fridge for a few minutes and then carry on.
I’ve even made you a video to show you how…
To salt or not to salt?
When making butter, add a little salt to the cream at stage 1 if you want salted butter. If you use the buttermilk in baking (it’s too good to waste), just remember to remove any added salt from your chosen bake recipe. Alternatively, add the salt after the churning process to keep the buttermilk pure.
Flavouring homemade butter
When you make butter at home, the options to add in flavourings are endless. The easiest time to add flavourings is when the butter has just been churned and drained of buttermilk. At this stage, it is still soft.
Simply transfer the portion of butter you want to flavour into a smaller bowl… Add the flavourings (I’ve added dried seaweed in the photograph below) and mash through with a fork before shaping into a cube or log and placing in the fridge to chill.
Can I freeze homemade butter?
Absolutely yes! Homemade butter freezes extremely well… in any shape. If you are wanting to use in pretty shapes (hearts are of course optional), then it’s definitely worth shaping/cutting and then freezing so that they are ready when you are.
Ready to make butter?
Like I said, you really should give butter-making a try. The flavour is simple luxury.
Let me know how you get on and whether you chose to flavour with anything. And don’t forget to stay in touch via subscription for all the latest at GFHQ (subscription box below). And to check out our complete Recipe Index. Enjoy.
Homemade Butter (and buttermilk)
- stand mixer
- baking paper
- 600 ml double cream
- ½ tsp fine sea salt optional
- herbs/seaweed flakes/other flavourings optional
- very cold or iced water to rinse
- Thoroughly wash all equipment using very hot soapy water and air dry before you begin.
- Pour the cream into a large chilled, spotlessly clean mixing bowl. You can add the salt now if using, or wait until the butter has separated from the buttermilk to keep the buttermilk unsalted.
- Beat the cream with a balloon whisk until it thickens.
- Keep whisking. It will reach firm peaks before it begins to separate into butter fat globules.
- Continue to whisk until the buttermilk completely separates and the butter becomes firm, sloshing around in the bowl.
- Pour the contents of the bowl through a clean (preferably sterilised) sieve to collect the buttermilk in a jug, leaving the butter in the sieve.
- Save the buttermilk in the fridge to use later.
- With clean hands, bring the butter together and squeeze to force out as much remaining buttermilk as possible.
- Place in a clean bowl and cover with very cold or iced water to rinse.
- Drain and repeat the rinsing process.
- Shape the butter into a block or log.
- Wrap in baking paper and chill for a couple of hours before transferring to a butter dish.
- If you want to cut the butter into shapes, use a hot knife to cut slices after the butter has been thoroughly chilled and use a small cookie cutter (heated in hot water and dried) to cut shapes.
- Any 'off cuts' can simply be re-moulded back into the block when you have finished.
© 2019-2021 Kate Dowse All Rights Reserved – Do not copy or re-publish this recipe or any part of this recipe on any other blog, on social media or in a publication without the express permission of Gluten Free Alchemist
Homemade Butter shared with :
- What’s For Dinner #266 with The Lazy Gastronome
- Fiesta Friday #343 with Angie and Spades, Spatulas & Spoons
- Full Plate Thursday #501 with Miz Helen’s Country Cottage
- Cook Blog Share with A Strong Coffee
- Creative Muster #398 with Fluster Buster