When I was growing up, we ate margarine. I was a kid. I didn't know any better.
But after I married John, I became a butter convert. And my boys NEVER ate margarine. We always had butter at our house. When we'd visit Pottsville, Pennsylvania every summer -- we'd bring John's favorite butter back to Iowa -- ten pounds of Keller butter would last until Christmas.
In 1978, when we moved back to Iowa, our neighbor, Bob Carter, milked a cow. And we would buy whole milk,($1 a gallon) so we made our own butter. It is the easiest thing in the world...
The other day, cream was on sale for $1. I thought it would be a fun thing to do with Lillian. We'll make our own butter...
|She poured the heavy whipping cream into the food processor...|
|Then, she pushed the button...(I have to put my hand on the top because I lost that thingy years ago)|
|Wow...my blade looks disgusting -- the only thing this machine is ever used for is PESTO...so it is a permanent green...|
|Lilian thought it was taking WAY TOO long...and after a few minutes, she is losing interest...|
|Then, suddenly, IT HAPPENED -- BUTTER...|
|She was DELIGHTED...|
|Gently, we put it in a strainer and let the buttermilk drain away|
|To really squeeze the buttermilk out, I used a linen napkin|
|Then, wrapped it in plastic wrap to give it shape.|
|I have a three-part butter dish. Bottom dish for water, inside to hold the butter, and then the lid. A gift from my mother-in-law, Helen Farro. We have used it every single day for over 20 years...|
So, for the last two batches, I waited for the salt until I separated the buttermilk. I kneaded the salt into the butter, using the plastic wrap.
And Lillian was right -- it took longer than I thought. But don't worry about the question, "when do I know it's butter?" Because it's like a pregnant woman asking, "How will I know if I'm in labor?"
The answer from mothers everywhere is always the same..."You'll know..."
That's how the butter thing works. Suddenly, there will be a water explosion -- as the fat releases itself from the buttermilk.
BOOM -- BUTTER...