Today we are making homemade butter! Say what!? Yes, it’s true. I know making your own butter may sound very scary and intimidating but it is actually super easy. People have been making butter for over 10,000 years. Ever since people have domesticated animals, they have been churning butter. It is a fairly simple process that literally anyone can do. All you need is some cream and something to agitate it with. You can use so many things to make butter like a jar, an electric mixer, a hand-held electric mixer, even an old fashioned whisk. Way back when they began making butter they actually made it by shaking around a bag of animal skin, full of cream, until the butter sperated from the buttermilk.
The science behind making butter is pretty simple as well. Basically, the fat in cream is contained in tiny globules. These tiny globules are little sacs of fat that are suspended in the milk. When you agitate the cream by shaking or whipping it, the little sacks bump into each other and all the butterfat spills out. It is the same process as making whipped cream, but after it becomes whipped cream, you keep on agitating it to deflate the whipped cream and make the butterfat clump together and separate from the buttermilk. That butterfat is the butter that everyone loves. Alright, now that I have explained all that science, let’s jump in and learn how to make butter!
Pour your heavy cream into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. If you don’t have an electric mixer you can also totally make it in a regular large bowl with a hand-held electric beater or a plain old whisk, if you want a nice workout!
Turn on the mixer and beat away! After a few minutes, it will begin to look like whipped cream. I know you may be tempted to reach in there and eat some but remember there is no sugar in it, so it’s not regular whipped cream! You will have to just keep on beating!
After about ten minutes of beating the butterfat, it will begin to separate from the buttermilk. This is where the magic happens. I remember the first time that I made butter and I couldn’t believe how fast it all happened. Be sure to watch the bowl carefully so you get to witness this awesomeness happening!
Once your butterfat and buttermilk have fully separated, you want to remove the butterfat from the bowl and drain off all the buttermilk from the butterfat. You can rinse the butter in some water to be sure that you got rid of it all. It is very important that you get it all out to prevent your butter from spoiling quickly.
If you want to make your butter salted you can at this point add a generous pinch of salt to your drained butter fat and mix until fully combined. Then form the butter into a log, using some parchment paper, and place in the fridge until you are ready to use it.
You have officially made your first batch of butter! Don’t you feel super accomplished? I felt like a mad scientist, the first time I made butter. It just fascinates me how you go from having heavy cream to butter and buttermilk in just minutes. Now you have two cups of homemade butter to have fun cooking with. There is so much that you can do with the butter. You can use it for baking, sauteing, or anything you would normally use butter for. I’d suggest making my Pumpkin Spice Buns Recipe or my Fettuccine Alfredo Recipe! They will be extra delicious with fresh butter.