It is possible to make butter without using any machines, so when next you are far from shops and have forgotten to buy butter, this is how to do it.
You will need
- 1 litre sized Consol jar with lid
- 250 ml cream,
- cold water,
- Salt (or other flavourings) to taste
~ Let the cream reach room temperature for at least twelve hours. Pour the cream into the jar. Screw the lid on.
~ Shake the jar for approximately 30 minutes. After a while you’ll have whipped cream. Keep shaking until you hear that a lump has formed inside (you will also see that the cream no longer sticks to the side of the jar, but has been replaced by a watery pale fluid – buttermilk), and shake an additional 30-60 seconds after that.
The shaking time is directly dependent on the thickness of the cream you use (which also determines the amount of butter and buttermilk that will result. You can add a glass marble to the jar to act as an agitator in the shaking process.
~ Remove the solids from the jar and save the buttermilk for use in Indian recipes, bread and shortbread, and scones.
~ Place the solids into a small bowl. Pour cold water over the butter and use your hands to squish it into a ball. Discard water and repeat rinsing two times more. This is done so that you squeeze out the remaining buttermilk.
~ At this point you have unsalted butter. Add salt to taste and mix it in by mashing the butter with a fork. Or you can add in things such as honey or herbs to create flavoured butters.
As a guideline, 250 ml of shop-bought cream should make about 100 gm of butter and 180 ml buttermilk.
Cheaper than store bought butter? Nope. It works out to about double the price of a locally manufactured brick of butter, but would be cost effective for a smallholder with access to her own cream or unskimmed milk.