Recently, when I made homemade creme fraiche, I figured why not make my own cultured butter, too.

Cultured Butter image

Butter made by first allowing heavy cream to culture naturally has a rich and complex flavor, and it’s really quite easy to prepare. Using the best quality cream (definitely organic, and raw if it’s available to you) results in the best quality butter. Keep in mind that butter made from the cream of pastured/grass-fed cows contains vital nutrients, including the fat-soluble vitamins: A, D, and E.

This cultured butter recipe begins in a very similar fashion to the homemade creme fraiche. You start by stirring a couple of tablespoons of cultured dairy (I used organic plain yogurt, but you could also use buttermilk) into your cream…

cultured cream photo

…then allow it to naturally ferment for about 12 hours at room temperature. Depending on your ambient temperature, it may thicken up a lot and it may not: either is fine.

You can make butter simply by shaking your jar of cream (this takes a while, but is fun to do with children), but I used my stand mixer to make my butter (a food processor also works well). What you are essentially doing is over whipping the cream. You may have done this inadvertently in the past…this time, you want to do it on purpose. You will end up with butter and buttermilk.

Making Cultured Butter image

It’s important to press all of the liquid out of the butter (make sure to save the buttermilk), and also to rinse it thoroughly. The “cleaner” it is and the more liquid you extract, the longer it will last.

making cultured butter picture

When your butter is ready, I’m sure you’ll find lots of ways to use it. I don’t use my homemade cultured butter in recipes where the butter is cooked: I spread it onto breads and other baked goods, crackers, and even vegetables (like radishes) so I can really savor the taste.

Organic Cultured Butter Recipe

Makes approximately 1 cup of butter

Ingredients:

*1 pint organic heavy cream (raw from grass-fed cows, if possible; if you can't fine raw cream, try to at least avoid ultra-pasteurized cream)
*3 tablespoons plain whole-milk yogurt or all-natural, cultured buttermilk

Directions:

1. Combine cream and yogurt in a glass jar and mix well. Cover the jar and allow to sit at room temperature for 12 hours.

2. Pour the cultured cream into the bowl of an stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Turn mixer on medium-high speed. Beat for 5-7 minutes, or until the cream has passed through the whipped cream stage, allowing it to separate into pale yellow butter and the off-white liquid which is the buttermilk.

3. Pour the butter and buttermilk into a fine mesh strainer set over a bowl. Use a rubber spatula to press as much of the buttermilk out as possible, then bottle it and save for another purpose. Take the fine mesh strainer with the butter in it and run cold water over it in the sink. Do this until the water runs clear.

4. Put the butter still in the strainer back over a bowl and, using your clean hands or a wooden spoon or spatula, knead/press it to remove the rest off the buttermilk/water. Keep kneading it until it is as "dry" as you can get it. You can add a pinch of sea salt to the butter, if you like, while you are kneading it.

4. When you have pressed all of the liquid out of your butter, put it in a covered container in the refrigerator or freezer for storage. Or, if you have a butter crock, you can store it at room temperature.

I recently made this cooked rice sandwich bread by AntoniaJames: it was the perfect vessel for getting the homemade butter into my mouth.

Home Dairy with Ashley English: All You Need to Know to Make Cheese, Yogurt, Butter & More has excellent information about making homemade butter, and here are a few more great posts about making your own butter:

Cultured Butter from Food in Jars
Getting Some Culture from Traveler’s Lunchbox
Homemade Butter from The Wednesday Chef
Homemade Butter from One Green Generation

 

15 Comments

  1. 1

    Lana @ Never Enough Thyme — May 2, 2011 @ 1:50 pm

    I love making my own butter, too, Winnie! The taste of purchased butter simply cannot compare, can it?

  2. 2

    Shirley — May 2, 2011 @ 3:30 pm

    there is nothing like fresh homemade bread and butter. Years ago I made my own butter because a farmer gave me gallons of fresh unpasturized milk every morning. I took the cream off the top and made tons of butter (and ice cream) I was making sour dough bread from scratch back then. It was amazing. I’m so happy to see that people are interested in making things
    from scratch again. Not only do you feel a sense of accomplishment but they taste great too. Keep cooking.

  3. 3

    Liren — May 2, 2011 @ 5:08 pm

    Fantastic! Sometimes I forget how simple things like butter can be to make – I am very guilty of taking the dairy section for granted at the grocer. How rewarding, and I’m sure, delicious!

  4. 4

    nicole cibellis — May 2, 2011 @ 10:31 pm

    I am so inspired. I can’t wait to try to make it myself.

  5. 5

    Sense of Home Kitchen — May 5, 2011 @ 7:13 am

    I have finally tried making my own créme fraîche, and it is terrific, next I will give cultured butter a try. Thanks for the instructions, I will bookmark them.

    ~Brenda

  6. 6

    thatshowiroll — May 5, 2011 @ 2:41 pm

    How wonderful! I have to try this butter recipe soon. Seems simple, yet I bet it tastes just right. Thank you!

  7. 7

    Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction — May 5, 2011 @ 7:01 pm

    This looks incredible! I can’t wait to give it a try… I am imagining how this butter would taste on a freshly baked blueberry muffin. :)

  8. 8

    Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen — May 6, 2011 @ 5:21 am

    I don’t know what it is about making homemade basics like this that I love so much, but it really is a satisfying feeling to make your own butter. Maybe it’s because it’s one of those things we don’t typically think can’t be done at home.

  9. 9

    Deirdre — May 7, 2011 @ 6:28 pm

    We often make our own butter too, and I’ve gone to school and done it as a fun activity with a whole class. A little trick I love, is it put 1-2 marbles in each of the shaking jars. The additional friction makes the milk turn into butter a little faster, and it’s easy to know when you’ve made whipped cream, because that’s the one stage during which you don’t hear the marble knocking around.

  10. 10

    One Simple Change: Add Some Culture | Healthy Green Kitchen — February 12, 2012 @ 1:15 pm

    […] (Salvadoran Sauerkraut) Red and Green Kraut Kimchi Pickles with Garlic Scapes DIY Creme Fraîche Homemade Organic Cultured Butter Homemade […]

  11. 11

    Homemade Butter–and Its Benefits | Choose Wisely — March 16, 2013 @ 1:39 pm

    […] to making good and nutritious butter is in using grass-fed, non-homogenized, unpasteurized dairy.  Here’s a great blog post I found on how to make cultured butter. Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like […]

  12. 12

    Adrienne — June 1, 2013 @ 3:22 pm

    How long will this butter keep for?

  13. 13

    David — June 1, 2013 @ 4:32 pm

    There is a dairy about 15 miles from where I live and I can purchase raw milk from Jersey cows. The gallon of milk will be roughly 3/8 cream. I do the ‘jar method’ with about a pint of cream in a quart jar, but don’t put the cultured yoghurt in it. After making the butter I usually end up making a pan of biscuits from scratch. Keep the buttermilk for use in the biscuits.

  14. 14

    Tanya S. — June 1, 2013 @ 5:43 pm

    When we had fresh milk, we took the cream (no yogurt or buttermilk) added a little salt and used our blender. Tasted great.

  15. 15

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