We acquired a gallon of fresh, unpasteurized cows milk recently. Curt wanted to try making 30 minute Mozzarella cheese with fresh milk to see if it worked any better than store bought milk. The milk we got had a large amount of cream in it and as I skimmed the cream off the top I got an idea… we should make butter.
First: I did my research, a Google search and a conversation with each of my Grandmas about methods to find out exactly what I needed to do.
Second: I filled a jar about half-full of cream. Soon after I filled two more jars when I realized each girl would require their own jar, even Wavy wanted one. The cream had already been sitting out on the counter for a while to warm it to room temperature, this quickens the process I was told.
Third: Shake, shake, shake.
In no time (really a lot quicker than I thought) we had butter. You could see a clean separation between the butter and the buttermilk in each of the jars.
Fourth: We had to wash the butter to prevent it from going rancid. We poured off the buttermilk, saving it for baking. We then put the butter in the blender with cold water and mixed it on low. After a few minutes we poured off the water and repeated washing the butter with fresh cold water until the water remained clear and all the buttermilk had been washed away. The fresh butter was quite soft so I put it in the fridge to harden up a bit.
Finally: We enjoyed some fresh butter on homemade buns. Yum!
As we shook the cream I read chapter two of Little House Big Woods, which happened to be about Ma making butter, it was not planned, but totally worked out.