- Prep Time: 10 minutes
If you make whipped cream you probably made butter at some point. Whip it just a bit too long and, guess what? Butter! It was just a generation or two ago that households churned their own butter. I actually have my grandmother's butter churn.
Back in the day it was unnecessary to inoculate cream, unpastureized milk had plenty of flora to make cultured butter. Milk that has not been homogenized will separate with cream floating to the top. Cream is skimmed off the top and physically churned or stirred until the buttermilk separates from the fat. The majority of butter today in the U.S. is sweet cream butter which is not cultured but once you have tasted cultured butter.... your eyes will pop open. Also, butter made in the summer is the best. Grass-fed dairy cattle will infuse that milk with Omega 3s and more.
The fluid that drains off the butter is buttermilk, real buttermilk. The buttermilk purchased in the store is skim milk with a culture added, a very different product then real buttermilk. Refrigerate or freeze it and use it in recipes that call for buttermilk.
- Heavy whipping cream - 2 cups or 1 pint
- Yogurt, plain - 2 tablespoons, with live culture
- Ice water - 3-5 cups
- Salt (optional) - 1/4 teaspoon, fine sea salt
- Mix together heavy cream and yogurt with live cultures. Pour into container (I use a quart jar) and loosely cover and allow cream to sit on counter at room temperature ( at 70-75 degrees F.) for 18-24 hours.
- Place the cultured cream in the refrigerator until cream reaches 60 degrees. (I don't overthink this, it just whips up better at around 60 degrees... )
- Place the cultured cream in a Kitchen Aid mixing bowl and slowly begin to whip with whisk attachment. As the cream begins to thicken you can increase the speed of the mixer. When I make butter or whipped cream, I always use the splatter guard on the mixing bowl.
- Once cream has solidified, drain buttermilk using a fine mesh strainer into a separate container.
- Remove butter from the strainer and place in a bowl and squeeze a few times to remove more of the buttermilk.
- Using ice water, wash the butter 3 times while you continue to squeeze and knead the butter. It is very important to remove all of the buttermilk so that your butter does not go rancid.
- As you do the final kneading, add the salt, if using.