Making butter is one of the most magical things you can do in the kitchen. I think you'll be amazed at how easy it is. At some point, when you're a sweet cream butter pro, maybe I can persuade you to give cultured butter a try. In the meantime, this is a good place to start your butter making adventure.
Blender Sweet Cream Butter
1 quart chilled raw, or minimally processed cream
1 1/2 cups chilled raw milk
1/2 tsp. salt, or to taste
1. Pour cream and milk in a blender.
2. Cover and process on high for approximately 40 seconds-1 minute.
3. The cream will go through three phases:
4. At this point, remove the lid and you should see butter curds floating in the liquid "buttermilk."
5. Pour the curds into a fine mesh strainer suspended over a container to catch the "buttermilk."
6. In a sink, rinse curds in the mesh strainer under very cold tap water, until water running through is mostly clear. Your butter will keep longer if you get as much "buttermilk" out as is reasonably possible.
7. Place curds in a container and press water out of the curds. I find it's easiest to do with my hands, just squeeze and knead. Continue to press (or squeeze and knead) water out of the butter until you have removed as much as possible.
8. Salt to taste- about 1/2 tsp. per quart of cream
9. To keep butter as fresh as possible, I prefer to store it in the freezer in 1/4 cup portions (about 1.9-2.0 ounces.) I keep a portion of it on my counter in a butter crock and remove it from the freezer as needed.
10. Store buttermilk in the fridge and use for baking, smoothies etc. It's fine to drink, but it doesn't taste very fresh.
Here's an old video of me making butter. It's a bit embarrassing, but just in case it's helpful for you, I will swallow my pride and let you see it.
1 quart of cream will make about 10.3 oz butter, or 1 1/4 cups butter.
When using the blender method, it's important to also include a percentage of milk with the cream, otherwise it becomes too thick during the whipped cream stage and does not create a vortex (spinning action) in the blender, which prevents it from forming butter curds.
Sometimes when it gets to the cream stage it creates a pocket of air above the blender blades and it stops spinning. If this happens, just stop the blender and give it a little stir with a spatula and then start where you left off.
The amounts used above will yield about 3 cups of true, or rather fresh "buttermilk." This is not the tart, cultured buttermilk that many of us think of when we hear the term buttermilk. It's simply the milk that remains after making butter.
Occasionally, I take cream off my milk. Because I'm removing the cream from the milk myself, I am not exact and I get some milk in the mixture. This actually works out well, because there is usually enough milk in my cream that I don't have to add the additional milk called for above to create a vortex in the blender. It's the one time that my hastiness in the kitchen works in my favor. You can easily see how much cream to milk you have in your jar by observing the cream line after the cream has sat for at least 4 hours.
If it doesn't work out, chances are you have let it process too long and your butter curds have become warm and melted. It's ok. Put it back in the fridge and try again tomorrow.
I highly recommend using raw cream off of raw milk from pastured cows! Since it's not pasteurized, has no stabilizers etc. It will yield the most nutrient dense, easily digestible and probiotic butter. You really can't match the benefits of raw cream, butter... unless it's raw cream, cultured butter! However, when you're first starting out, or in a pinch, you can use the most minimally processed cream you can buy. It's not the best option, but it will still yield a higher quality butter than most of what you can buy.
When you figure you can get butter, yogurt or kefir and all the various food you can make with yogurt/kefir, as well as milk for drinking etc. out of one gallon of milk, it's actually a very economical, delicious and nutritious venture!