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Why Butter is Back?

Why Butter is Back

We’ve seen it, just like you.  Magazines and newspapers splashed with the headline “Butter is Back!”, but here at the Land O’Lakes Test Kitchens, we like to think that butter never really went away. Admittedly, there are some compelling reasons why butter has been receiving some pretty good press recently. For us, personally and professionally, working for a butter company makes our job easier, as butter is the key ingredient in many of the recipes we create at work and serve to our families at home.

 

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One of the top food trends driving butter’s resurgence is purchasing products that contain simple ingredients. Butter only has two ingredients:  cream and salt. What could be simpler than that? The process for making butter is pretty simple, too. “Churning” means to agitate or turn. When you churn cream, the naturally present proteins bind together and form a clump of butter. Have you ever made whipped cream and gone past the light, fluffy stage, only to end up with something lumpy and curdled? If you had kept going, you would have made butter! butter is simple, except all the wonderful things you can do with it.

Butter is a mainstay in the kitchen because it is utilized in so many ways. Spreading on bread or topping vegetables is just the beginning. When used in baking, butter brings rich dairy flavor and tenderness to cookies, muffins or cakes. Butter is what makes pie crusts flaky and creates layers in biscuit that melt in your mouth. Butter enhances the richness and flavor when sautéing or roasting meats or vegetables.  It thickens sauces, makes grilled cheese sandwiches crispy, frosting velvety, and popcorn irresistible, just to name a few. There are some foods we just can’t eat without a generous amount of butter: corn-on-the-cob, crusty French loaf, lobster or baked potato --and for good reason.

The real reason butter is back is simply because of the unmistakable flavor it brings to the table and how it makes everything it touches more delicious. Check out our videos on basic techniques for using butter in both baking and cooking applications!  Or, try a few some of these butter-centric recipes.

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