Sometimes I’m both flabbergasted and humbled by all the things I don’t know how to do. Today, I made butter for the first time. I had never even thought about making butter before. In our convenience world of ready-made everything, we’ve really lost touch with how things come to be. Some of these things are actually quite simple to do yourself. Butter certainly was.
I decided to give butter making a try after reading an article in the February/March 2010 issue of Organic Gardening magazine. In a nutshell, butter is made by whipping cream well past the frothy whipped cream stage. You whip it until it starts congealing and then separating. This stage is illustrated in the photo above. The liquid is then separated from the butter solids. The butter solids are then rinsed, with the excess liquid squeezed out. I then mixed in a bit of salt and then that was it. All done. It took less than ten minutes to do. Below you can see the results. It tasted great on the no-knead bread I’ve been making.
While the butter making was humbling because it was so easy to do and I had no idea, it does illustrate something about myself that I am proud of: I like to learn new things. As I get older, I hope this interest in learning new things persists. There is no reason to ever be bored. There are so many things to learn and do. As I look at the year ahead, I’m already thinking about what might be next and right now both knitting and beekeeping are strong contenders. Here’s to a wonderful 2010 and to life spent learning.