Delicious homemade butter and Fresh buttermilk scones
I was immensely excited for this month’s blog post to come to fruition. When I started researching the cream I would need to use in New Zealand, Kate reminded me about Wangapeka, a brilliant dairy producer near Nelson that had couriered down clotted cream for my baby shower which she lovingly organised.
A quick phone call to them saw that we had 3L of ‘Pouring’ cream winging its way to Dunedin, ready to be turned into delicious butter.
Initially I wanted to use ‘double cream’, but the good folks at Wangapeka explained that due to where the cows were in their milking cycles, the fat content of the cream was very high, meaning their pouring cream would be perfect for creating a decent butter yield. Sure enough, the next day there was a chilled package on my desk, which contained my 3L of cream. The cream was beautifully cold, so I allowed it warm slightly on the side while I set to sterilising the two mixing bowls I needed make the butter. I also had 2 bowls of ice water and muslin on hand to help eliminate all the remaining butter milk from the butter once it was made.
I couldn’t believe my eyes when I tried to get the cream out of the bottle. It was so thick that I had to cut off the top of the bottle off and spoon the cream into the mixing bowl. I tried some of the cream left over in the bottle – It was heavenly, it had a delicious sweetness to it which I was looking forward to seeing if the butter retained.
The first butter I made was the truffle butter. I really enjoyed watching the machine mix the cream into thick cream, before seeing it break down into massive chunks of butter and butter milk. It was interesting to hear the change in sounds coming from the machine too – the sudden thunking (is thunking a word? It is definitely a sound!) of the butter and sloshing of the butter milk was a brilliant signal that I had been successful.
The whole process was actually very quick. Although it does require your input (squeezing and washing the butter to eliminate at much butter milk as possible) but once the butter is made it is ready to eat!
I then set to use up the three small bottles of butter milk – the bi-product of my butter making. I made the vanilla buttermilk into these beautiful scones, absolutely delicious and easy to make; they also made sure nothing from my butter making experiment went to waste.
½ meter of muslin per butter flavour
Sieve or Colander
1L thick pouring cream or double cream
And one of the following;
1 Vanilla pod, or
2 tbsp high quality black truffle oil, or
1-2tsp salt (to taste)
Fresh Buttermilk scones
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup caster sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
75g butter, well chilled
1 cup buttermilk
1. Sterilise a metal mixing bowl, sieve and another bowl (for washing the butter in) fill the bowl with cold / iced water
2. Once the mixing bowl is dry, add the cream and flavour, before mixing on a medium speed. The cream will whip, then break down and separate into butterfat globules. The buttermilk will separate from the butter and you are left with both butter and butter milk in your mixer.
3. Turn the butter and milk into a muslin lined sieve (keep butter milk to once side)
4. Put the butter back into a mixing bowl and whisk for a further 30 seconds to 1 minute to remove as much buttermilk as possible, before removing and sieving in step 3.
5. Transfer the butter into the ice cold water before using the butter pats/hands to manually expel any remaining butter milk by squeezing and massaging the butter together. This is an important step, as any buttermilk left in the butter will sour and the butter will go off quickly. Try not to handle the butter too much (if using your hands) as it will liquefy.
6. Drain the ice water and refill, before wash twice more – you want the water to be clear not cloudy (cloudy water indicates butter milk is present).
7. Wrap tightly in muslin to help create your ideal shape, then remove muslin and wrap in greaseproof or waxed paper and keep chilled in a fridge. The butter also freezes well.
1. Pre-heat the oven to 190 degrees on bake
2. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt
3. Cut the butter into small pieces and work into the flour/sugar combination , so the mixture resembles breadcrumbs
4. Add the buttermilk and work through with a fork until mostly combined.
5. Turn out the dough onto a well floured surface and knead for a couple of minutes
6. Divide into even quantites and roll into small, smooth balls and place evenly spaced into a baking tray.
7. Flatten each scone slightly, before brushing with buttermilk
8. Bake for 10-15 minutes; wait to cool before sprinkling with icing sugar.
Serve with butter and/or clotted cream and jam - YUM!