For some reason, when my parents recently took a trip to Wales, they thought it would be a good idea to bring back a Kilner butter maker. At the market on Saturday, there was a stall selling unpasteurised cream...perfect for giving the new butter churn a try.
I've certainly never made butter before...but loving this type of thing...I was very keen to have a try. It's actually not that difficult, just a little time consuming. You need to churn the cream for about 15 minutes. It's a very odd thing, you think nothing is happening, nothing is happening and you keep turning and turning. Then all of a sudden it just goes. The picture is of the moment when the cream turned to butter and buttermilk. Next job is to collect the buttermilk and put to one side. It's meant to be great for scones, bread, cakes etc. Then you wash the remaining butter with ice water to get the rest of the buttermilk out. Once the water runs clear, it's time to pat the butter and remove any remaining water. I wanted salted butter...so once the water is out, you flatten the butter and sprinkle a little salt and mix it well.
My goodness, it was delicious. You need to eat it quite quickly...more quickly than butter you buy from the shops. I guess there's nothing added in home made butter to preserve it. But that makes it all the nicer and more special. I was actually really chuffed with the results and will definitely keep making it. The butter churn is a Kilner one and I would definitely recommend it. From 600mls of cream, you get about 400g of butter, so it's a pretty decent amount.
I am becoming more and more conscious of wanting to understand where my food is coming from. January, I decided to go vegan and I really want to make sure that what I choose to eat is ethical in how it's produced. If I eat animal products, I want to make sure the animals welfare has been considered. Making my own butter, using cream from the market where the produce comes from small ethically run farms, makes me feel good. I know where the butter comes from. I know the cows aren't badly treated. This is a big part of why I can't wait to have my own chickens. I'll know where my eggs come from...that my hens are happy and have a good life. I'm considering doing another vegetarian/vegan month very soon. I have no issues with going vegan for short periods, but actually so long as I understand and know where the animal products come from and that the animals have been treated well, I'm happy to eat eggs and dairy.