The holidays are a special time. Every culture has holiday time and the special foods that go with. This year, try something new. You never know when that new cranberry recipe is such a hit everyone wants it again. You are not really breaking tradition, you are creating new tradition. That’s how traditions get started in the first place.
During the holiday season do something special for your family and family of friends. Here is a little something you can do. It only takes two ingredients and less than fifteen minutes. Make butter. Really. A mixer does all the work. All you have to do is go to the store and buy heavy whipping cream. A little kosher salt and before you know it, you….have….made….butter! (say it like Tom Hanks when he made fire, same thing)
Tell your guests, as you serve the butter with banana bread, that you made this butter fresh, today. They will be amazed and it will taste heavenly. Only you need to know how easy it was…like buttah!
Here is what you will need:
Kitchen Aid mixer or a hand mixer
2 cups of Heavy Whipping Cream
1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt
a pitcher of ice water
a cooking thermometer
a rubber or silicone spatula
a sealed container for the butter, like a Glad container or a Tupperware container or Saran wrap over a bowl.
Kitchen Aid Mixer Instructions
Let the cream sit at room temperature until it gets somewhere between 60-65 degrees Fahrenheit. I chose 63.2 because it seemed pretty close to between. It’s not really rocket science. It’s just a range. In the old days they would say room temperature. But that was before heated and cooled homes and gorgeous Fall days.
Using the whisk/whip attachment, whip on medium speed just until it looks light yellow and crumbly. It will only take a few minutes. At that point, stop and change over to the mixing blade.
Continue mixing with the mixing blade on medium speed.
The very second watery stuff shows up and you have a sloshy sound, shut the mixer off. You are almost to butter! That liquidy stuff is the buttermilk. Pour the buttermilk in a glass and use it for cooking. Some people like to drink it. I will use it tonight since mashed potatoes and gravy are on the menu. You don’t have to strain the buttermilk, but I did.
Next, smash the butter around with your spatula. Pour about a cup of the ice cold water over the butter. Mix on low speed for just a few seconds. You will see the liquid turn quite cloudy. Stop the mixer again and pour the liquid off. Do not save this stuff. Just pour it down the sink.
Do it again: smash the butter around with your spatula. Pour about a cup of ice cold water over the butter. Mix on low speed for just a few seconds. The liquid will be cloudy, but not as cloudy as before. Toss the liquid.
Repeat and rinse. (I thought it was quite appropriate for this application)
Now, add 1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt to the butter, after draining off the water, and mix on low speed just for a couple of seconds. It’s just to get the salt started. Remove the bowl and start smashing the butter with the spatula. While you are smashing away, think of what you’ve got around the kitchen right now that you could taste the butter on. Trust me, you will be thinking of that. If any small amounts of liquid show up during the smashing process, just pour it off. After a minute or two the salt should be incorporated and you will have determined how you are going to taste the newly made butter.
Transfer the butter to a container and keep covered in the fridge. It should keep for a week or longer. It will make about a cup. If you bake with this butter, you will have to weigh it. So much air has been incorporated into it that just straight measuring in a measuring cup will not be accurate. That’s why premeasured sticks are available at the grocery store!!!
Hand Mixer Instructions
Not everyone has a Kitchen Aid mixer. I refer to it as my kitchen trophy. I earned it about eight years ago. I don’t want you to think just because you don’t have the kitchen trophy that you can’t cook. Quite the contrary. I cooked and baked for years without one. So, for those of you still trying to earn your trophy, here is how I did it with the hand mixer. No snobbery is allowed at the Gravy Company. It did require more smashing with a spatula, but hey, it gave me more time to think of all the yummy things I was going to put butter on.
Let the cream sit at room temperature until it get somewhere between 60-65 degrees Fahrenheit. I chose 63.2 because it seemed pretty close to between. It’s not really rocket science. It’s just a range. In the old days they would say a little warmer than room temperature. But, that was before heated and cooled homes and gorgeous Fall days.
In a large mixing bowl mix the cream on low/medium speed until it becomes pale yellow, crumbly looking, and liquid is puddled at the bottom of the bowl. It should take about 3-4 minutes. The reason I had my hand mixer on so low of a speed is because the cream was splattering all over. Just turn it down to a lower speed if you get splatters.
Stop the hand mixer and scrape the blades with your spatula. Drain the liquid into a glass. This is buttermilk. Try to mix the clumpy butter for a few more seconds on low speed until more liquid shows up. Pour that into the glass.
Now, you are ready to start smashing with the spatula. The hand mixer will not work so good from this point forward. Smash the butter onto one side of the bowl, pour about a cup of the ice water over the butter and smash until the water turns very cloudy. Discard this liquid into the sink.
Smash the butter to one side of the bowl and pour another cup of the cold water and smash the butter until the liquid turns cloudy. It will be less cloudy than before. Discard this liquid into the sink.
Smash the butter to one side of the bowl and pour another cup of the cold water and smash the butter until the liquid turns cloudy. Discard this liquid into the sink. Add one more cup of water and smash the butter. This time, discard the slightly cloudy water and continue smashing and turning the butter. Any liquid that forms in the bowl just sop up with a paper towel. Smash some more. Sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt and smash for a minute or two until you think the salt is evenly mixed through. Sop up any liquid with a paper towel. You have just made butter!
Homemade butter with honey drizzled over it. Perfect for toast, pancakes, or biscuits Enjoy.
I know I have thrown around a lot of brand names, but you’ve got to trust me on this one, those people at Glad, Saran, and Tupperware have never even heard of the Gravy Company. I just like the stuff and everybody knows what I am talking about. It’s like Kleenex, we do not say tissues, we say kleenex!