Last Wednesday Fañch and I brought out the cream separator and transformed several buckets of milk into one bucket of cream. Each time we do this I am surprised by how much milk is needed to produce even one small bucket of cream. By Friday afternoon the cream was ready to undergo the next step in the process and we poured it into the churn.
This machine spins the cream until little pieces of butter begin to form. At this point we empty the liquid byproduct (more on this later) and add ice cold water back into the churn. This process is repeated several times to wash the butter. Once the liquid remains clear and is longer cloudy after being mixed with the butter, we were able to continue to the next part of the butter-making process.
At that point we had to knead the butter to release as much as the remaining water as possible. I find that this part, as well as the washing step, are the most important but also the most complicated. It seems like no matter what we do there are still drops of water always being pressed out when we work the butter. Eventually we decided that it had been kneaded enough and we mixed in a little salt before patting them into little slabs and packaging them up.
Unfortunately I did not take any pictures this time around but will do so in a few weeks when we attempt it again!
Now, back to my favorite part about making butter, that byproduct I mentioned earlier also known as buttermilk! I decided to use it to try making buttermilk biscuits and I have definitely found a new favorite thing to bake! They smelled absolutely delicious and topped with a bit of honey from our neighbor and some ginger syrup the first batch was eaten within a day.
And a bonus picture from today’s morning commute: