We regularly buy butter from the store, but I also make it whenever I need some of the by-products. You wouldn't believe how easy it is to make your own butter. We've done it before as an experiment for the children (well, for Will anyway as Lila wasn't born yet), which involves letting them shake cream in a jar for a long time until it turns, then rinsing the buttermilk out by hand under cold water.
That's fine if you've got twenty minutes to kill with small children, but here is the quick way to make butter in less than 2 minutes.
- pour some heavy cream into your blender
- switch blender on until it starts spraying buttermilk everywhere
- pour off buttermilk and save it
- add some COLD water to your blender and blitz the butter again
- pour off water and any leftover butter milk
- press your lovely fresh butter into a jar or container of some sort
If you like salted butter, add salt. If you like brandy butter, add brandy. I like vanilla butter, so I add... vanilla. It's really that easy.
Now the best part is that buttermilk that you poured off makes delicious pancakes, cookies, scones... and so much more. But the best use, in my humble opinion, is making cream cheese.
This is to die for, you will NEVER want to buy Philadelphia again. Ever.
It does, however, take 5 days, so you probably will.
It freezes well though, so maybe not?
Up to you.
Anyways, here's how.
- DAY 1 warm 500ml of cream to body temperature (no hotter)
- take it off the heat and add a tablespoon of buttermilk* and 1/2 tsp rennet
- cover and leave somewhere warm (next to the dehydrator is perfect for me, but you could use the top of your fridge)
- Leave for 24-36 hours. The mixture is ready when it doesn't move if you tilt the bowl.
- DAY 2 Pour the mixture into a cheese cloth lined colander over a catch bowl and allow it to drain (you are draining off the whey - please store it, I'll post about it's uses and link back in a few days *promise*)
- DAY 3 remove the curds from the cheese cloth and mix in any herbs, spices, salt...etc... that you want to use (strawberry jam makes a delicious one)
- Line your colander with a fresh cheesecloth and allow to drain in the fridge for 2 days or until the cheese is as firm as you like it.
- Day 5 separate as much as you like to keep in the fridge and freeze the rest.
Easy peasy, and super delicious.
*If you use cultured buttermilk that you have bought you don't need to add rennet.