I was thinking about what I could eliminate from my grocery list. I’ve been making breakfast and dinner recipes from 100 Days of Real Food and The Fresh 20 that are delicious as well as full of awesome micronutrients. The past month has been chock full of yummy, healthy meals and that has inspired me to take the next step.
My mother lives with us now and is a butter addict. Well, she’s actually a toast addict, who uses butter as lubricant. We had already switched from “spreads” like country crock to real butter, but I wondered if we couldn’t take it one step further and make my own. That way I know exactly how it was made and can choose cream from the local farmers market to make the butter. About two years ago I had insisted we stop using margarine because butter tastes much better, it’s a natural product that human beings have been eating and cooking with for centuries without damaging their health, and I trust cows more than food product scientists.
So why on earth did I ever use margarine, a highly synthetic and unpleasant-tasting concoction laced with additives and cheap, low-grade oils refined on an industrial scale? Propaganda. My parents had been fed “the propaganda” since the mid-80s, and I grew up on that funny Parkay commercial that made me trust the creamy yellow stuff that came in tubs. Plus it was easier to spread.
In February 2013 the unholy alliance of Government nutritionists and the food processing industry were exposed in a study of Australian men and subsequent meta-studies of the health consequences of consuming food products like margarine. If they hadn’t lied — and margarine really was better for you, as they’ve been claiming for decades — you’d expect the middle-aged Australian men who switched to safflower oil to live longer and have better health outcomes.
The exact opposite turned out to be true. Those men who ate more of the safflower-derived products were almost twice as likely to die from all causes, including heart disease.
So, butter is better! Plus it’s easy to make:
1. Take a pint of cream and pour it into a mixing bowl.
2. Use a handheld mixer and whip the cream on high until the creamy yellow soft butter separates from the buttermilk. Takes about 5 minutes.
3. Pour 1 cup of ice cold water and pour it over the butter and buttermilk. Mix it for about 1 minute.
4. Spoon it all into a fine strainer or cheesecloth and press or squeeze out the water and buttermilk.
5. Spoon the resulting butter into a butter-keeper or bowl.
6. Savor your 1/2 pound of butter.
That’s it. Super simple and tasty. Enjoy.