Monday, August 09, 2010

Home Creamery

That is the name of the restaurant Signal wants us to open. He will be the chef. I have been assigned the duties of "Assistant No. 1." M has been designated "Assistant No. 2." On the menu at Home Creamery?

Well, first up, it's butter. Good, old-fashioned, salted-down, homemade butter.

Nearly two years ago, I saw this book in the Cookbook Store in Toronto. The book is called Home Creamery by Kathy Farrell-Kingsley. I was fascinated by the idea of making my own butter, yogurt and cheese. So I came back home and asked my library to purchase it. They did so dutifully. It has been checked out four times since December 2008, when it was purchased. Every single time, it was checked out by yours truly!

In all that time, however, I had never gotten around to actually trying one of the recipes. Until Sunday morning. I had a cup of cream leftover from our adventures in ice-cream making earlier in the week. (More on that later, but we ate it all before I could take a picture, so it will have to wait!) And since that is pretty much all you need, ingredient-wise, Signal and I went to work.

We poured the cream into a Mason jar. We screwed the lid on tight. Then we shook. Then I stopped shaking to set the kitchen timer for 20 minutes. Then we shook some more. We turned some Indigo Girls on the computer to provide a soundtrack. We danced and shook and shook and danced. And then we shook and danced some more!

At about the 8 minute mark, I noticed considerable thickening of the material in the jar. At the 10 minute mark, I thought "Huh. That's it. We've whipped the cream." But I kept at it. (Signal at this point was playing Noah's Ark with his plastic animals and a Winnie-the-Pooh book cube.) At about the 12 minute mark, all of sudden, I heard a "whack" and a "splash." I looked in the jar, and there was a completely solid, light yellow mass in a thin, whitish liquid.

Holy crap! We did it! We made butter in a jar with nothing but cream and shaking!

I rinsed it, salted it, and put it in a little bowl in the refrigerator. I didn't eat any right away, though I did dip my finger in for a small taste. It was salty and delicious.

It might have taken me nearly two years to get it done, but I finally made my first foray into what I like to call our adventures in homesteading. And the fact that Signal loves it so much he wants to open a family restaurant? Well, that's just butter on the bread!


Wendy said...

Hey, I just might give this a try too, what a great arm workout! lol Mine definitely need some assistance, so maybe making butter is the answer!

Anonymous said...

That's really neat! Now I want to try that butter!

You realise there will now be many holds on that book, right? ;-)

Carroll said...

I remember making butter during a class trip to St. Marie among the Hurons in grade 8. It was such a gratifying experience to see it take shape...and yummy too! good for you!

Holly @ Domestic Dork said...

I LOVE making butter. I just drop two marbles in the jar and shake. When I can't hear the marbles rattle I know I'm making process. When they start clicking on the glass jar again I know I'm done. I rinse it in the jar with cold tap water, add salt and press out any remaining water on a plate, then transfer it to a dish. My MIL is going to try making me a French butter crock so I can keep the butter out and not have it go solid in the fridge. On homemade bread it is the BEST. Yum! I save the leftover buttermilk for pancakes.