What you need:
- 1 pint of heavy whipping cream
- a large glass jar with a lid OR a hand or electric mixer and a mixing bowl
- a large bowl
- a spatula
- cold water
- 2 ramekins
- Optional: a pinch of salt, a tray of candy molds, butter molds and/or wooden stamps
What you do:
- Bring the heavy whipping cream to room temperature by leaving it out of the refrigerator for a couple of hours.
- If you are using a jar, pour the cream into the jar, screw on the lid, and begin shaking the jar. If you are using a mixer, pour the cream into the mixing bowl and begin beating.
- After a couple of minutes of shaking or beating, the heavy whipping cream will turn into lighter whipped cream.
- After a couple more minutes, the lightly whipped cream will turn into a thicker whipped cream.
- Soon this thicker whipped cream will separate into solid butterfat and liquid whey.
- Eventually, you will have a lump of yellow butter and some liquid buttermilk. Pour the buttermilk out bit by bit and keep shaking or beating the cream until no more buttermilk is forming and all the buttermilk has been poured out. (You can collect the buttermilk in another jar and cool it in the refrigerator. Then you can drink it or bake with it later!)
- Dump the lump of butter into the large bowl. Pour cold water over the butter and squeeze the butter against the side of the bowl with the spatula to press out any last bits of buttermilk. Pour the buttermilk/water out and rinse the butter with more water. Repeat until only clean butter remains.
- You can mix a pinch of salt into your butter to preserve it and make it taste a little less sweet.
- Put the butter into ramekins or, if you want to mold it into fun shapes, a tray for molding candy. You can even purchase molds made especially for shaping butter: butter molds Be sure to chill the butter in the refrigerator for several minutes before popping it out of the molds.
- Often people and creameries will stamp their finished butter with a wooden stamp carved with a mark that stands for them, such as their initials or a special design. You can purchase stamps, baking stamps, or carve your own letters and pictures into your finished butter. Again, chill the butter before trying to stamp any impressions on it.