Thanksgiving Butter

butter5Lately, we have spent a lot of time contemplating the ways to explain Thanksgiving to Dane. We are diving into the stories of Pilgrims and Indians, but what I deeply want to convey to her this year, are the two sides of thankfulness - to give thanks for what we receive, while also finding joy in giving, so that we may create thankfulness in the hearts of others. I tend to teach her in ways that are tangible, so when I thought of our activities this week, the Thanksgiving feast came to mind. 

"Would you like to make something for our Thanksgiving feast? Something all your own, that you can share with everyone?"  I asked her. 

To which she replied with excitement, "Of course! What can I make?"

"Butter!" I told her.

After all, butter is the binding creaminess passed from hand to hand and across the table with love. With each lick of butter shared, Dane may understand the heart-swell that comes with bringing contentment to others. Can't you just see hand-fulls of children shaking jars of fresh butter together on Thanksgiving Day!?


You will need:

1 pint of heavy cream
Sea salt
Mason jars with lids

Fill the jar half way with heavy cream and screw the lid tight. Shake the jar back and forth vigorously until it becomes thick like whipped cream (about 5-7 minutes).

You can open the jar at that point and see the change of thickness. Next, close the lid and shake again (harder) until the whipped cream becomes firm. It will feel like a ball has formed in the jar, and the liquid (buttermilk!) will separate from the butter.

At this point, open the jar and press the buttermillk out of the butter with a paddle or spoon. Run the butter under cold water and press again until the water is clear and no buttermilk can be pressed from it. Add the salt to taste and enjoy!

* One pint of heavy cream will yield about one cup of butter.

 Megan Martin is the author of Fig & Fauna, a blog about farm inspired cooking and agrarian living. She lives on a small farm in South Florida, where she raises animals and grows a vegetable garden. Megan and her husband own and operate Onblonde Pet Spa of Palm Beach.