Butter is a dairy product that is used in cooking and as a spread or condiment. It is most often made from cow’s milk, but the milk of sheep, goats and buffalo is also used. When it is kept cool butter is a solid, but it has a relatively low melting point of about 32–35 °C (90–95 °F). Natural butter is normally pale yellow, but a stronger yellow color can occur naturally or with food colors. If you have ever wondered how butter is made, continue reading to find out.
How is butter made?
The first step in the butter making process is separating the cream from the milk. It is then stirred, pasteurized and left for 24 hours. It is then placed into the churner, which spins the cream and allows the fat molecules in the cream to bunch together. Air is released every 5 minutes until the cream has been churned for 30 minutes. The fat molecules have now joined to create the first stages of butter and the remaining liquid, known as buttermilk, is drained. Salt is added to the butter to give it flavor and it is churned for another 30 minutes to create the finished product. The butter is then shaped with a machine and packaged for distribution.
The following video shows butter being made at a large factory:
Making butter is actually quite easy and can even be done in the kitchen at home. To make butter at home you can simply churn cream with a handheld mixer until it separates into butter and buttermilk.
Did you know?
Butter is high in saturated fat and also contains cholesterol, which has caused many people to switch to margarine. However, in small amounts butter has many health benefits, such as high levels of vitamin a.
Butter can be made from both fresh or fermented cream. Fermented cream butter is known as traditional butter or European butter. It has a strong flavor that is slightly sour.