Butter is one of those foods the average person just doesn't understand. They think it's unhealthy. They avoid eating it. YET, they don't realize that 90% of butter in supermarket aisles isn't the real deal
This might not come as a shock if you've been following us here at the WARKITCHEN for some time. But if you haven't, you might feel the same way I did when I first found out. It's insane. Go to your supermarket and check the ingredients list of these things. You'll have companies label their yellow tubs "BUTTER" only for it to be 40% canola oil. Somehow this is legal. It's crazy.
So the next time you buy butter, make sure you don't get duped. Butter should only be made with one ingredient: milk.
Today, we'll talk about how you can take your butter game to the next level. Butter isn't just about deciding to use unsalted or salted butter. You can actually do so much more: compound it.
Compound butter, or "beurre composé" in French, is as simple as it sounds. The term "compound" comes from the Latin word "componere," meaning "to put together." The great thing about compound butter is that you can use just about anything. From various herbs, spices to even fruit — it's up to your imagination. Also, it's one of the simplest things to make.
Mixed Herb Compound Butter Recipe:
- 1 full stick of room temperature butter
- 1 full clove garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 tsp lemon juice
- 3 tbsp parsley
- 1/2 tbsp basil
- 1/2 tbsp rosemary
- 1/2 tbsp oregano
- 1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
- Salt to taste
Chop the herbs finely (you could make slightly larger cuts if you want to as well)
- Incorporate the butter, herbs, & garlic in the bowl
- Add lemon juice, pepper, and then salt to taste
- Make sure every ingredient is uniformly distributed
- Once done, roll in wax paper to shape into stick (or really any shape of your choice)
- And, you're done!
- Let it rest in the fridge for it to take shape
- You can use just garlic and butter, to make a spread that gives you that garlicky aftertaste we all love
- Be careful though, it's very easy to make something that's too overpowering
- Instead of putting minced garlic in raw or roasted, lightly boil peeled garlic cloves in salted water for about 7-8 minutes before incorporating them in
- How much to use depends on how much garlic you like! I'd say if you boil them, about 4-5 medium sized cloves per stick work beautifully
- Sauté some whole peppercorns in butter for 4-5 until fragrant
- Once done, let them cool and then mash them into a puree before incorporating them with butter
Best Compound Butter Pairings For Different Meats:
- Steak: Parsley + lemon juice
- Chicken: Garlic + thyme + roasted garlic
- Turkey: Citrus zest + juice + roasted garlic
- Bread: Garlic purée
- Fish: Fresh herbs + lemon juice (the recipe above is perfect; though some people don't like mixing dairy with fish)
These pairings are from The Modern Proper. Link to their article is featured in today's Manuscripts of the Week.