The past few days I have been craving a fresh loaf of bread. Adam really likes whenever I bake honey wheat bread so that’s what I made.
I have also been seeing around the interwebs how to make your own butter. So I did and IT WAS SO EASY! I’ll show that below too.
Honey Wheat Bread
- 1 package of active dry yeast (or 2 1/2 teaspoons of bread machine yeast, if using a bread machine)
- 1 cup of warm milk (80-90º F)*
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 1/3 cup of honey
- 1 cup all-purpose flour*
- 1 and 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup of rolled oats
*Scald milk first and let sit until it reaches correct temperature.
*You can use all wheat flour if desired.
Okay, so I dumped all the ingredients in the bread machine and let it mix and rise in there (I know, I am so lazy).
If you want to do this by hand, just dissolve the yeast in the warm milk and then begin adding the other ingredients. Let rest for a few minutes in between mixing. Once all ingredients are throughly mixed, cover with a towel and let the dough sit to rise.
NOW THIS IS THE IMPORTANT PART:
You will let your bread rise initially after mixing for about an hour. Then shape your dough (into a loaf pan, a baguette, a round, rolls, whatever you please). After you have shaped your dough, let it sit for 3 -4 hours: the longer the better. Letting the dough rise for a few hours is the difference between a thick, quickly sink to the bottom of your stomach bread to a light, fluffy and soft loaf that you will want to hug.
After 3 or more hours of rising, preheat your oven to 375ºF and place your loaf in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes.
A SECOND IMPORTANT PART:
When the loaf is removed from the oven and from it’s pan, let it sit still for 5 – 15 minutes before you tear into it. I know it is hard to not slice a piece immediately after it is taken out of the oven but letting the bread compose itself from being in a hot oven and then to your kitchen table will greatly help the bread and will (hopefully) produce better slices and better taste.
THE FINISHED PRODUCT
Okay now onto homemade butter.
The only ingredients you will need is heavy cream (sometimes called heavy whipping cream) and honey. Salt is optional. I forgot to add – and this goes with the bread recipe too - use quality honey, pure grade A honey. No imitation honey. If you are taking the time to make a fresh loaf and fresh honey butter you want to use quality ingredients to get the best taste possible.
Back to making homemade butter…
Grab some heavy cream at the grocery store. I bought a pint.
Let the cream sit out for an hour or so so it reaches room temperature. I let it sit on my kitchen table for about 3 hours while I took a bike ride.
And now the fun part…
Pour the cream into a mason jar that has a secure lid (or any kind of jar that has a very secure lid), I just happened to use mason jars.
A VERY IMPORTANT PART
Whatever kind of jar you use, make sure the heavy cream only fills 1/3 of the jar – any more and the cream will not turn into butter. Since I bought a pint of heavy cream I needed to use two mason jars.
Now the fun part…
Once the cream is in the jar and the lid is securely fit, shake the jar up and down, side to side, above your head, behind your back…okay you really only need to shake it up and down, just trying to be a little funny.
Within the first 30 seconds, the cream in the jar will turn into a whipped and creamy consistency. Keep shaking.
After about 1 minute or 2, the cream will separate into butter and buttermilk. When this happens, you will hear a “sloshing” noise. Shake for about 10 -15 more seconds. Then stop.
Grab a bowl and strainer and place the strainer on top of the bowl. Pour the butter and buttermilk into the strainer and squeeze the buttermilk out.
ANOTHER IMPORTANT PART
After you have strained the butter, take the strainer over to the sink and rinse with very cold water for 30 – 60 seconds or until all the buttermilk it out. This is very important because if you do not get all of the buttermilk out the butter will go rancid very quickly.
After rinsing, you’re finished. You have just made butter! Now sprinkle some salt in there or pour your desired amount of honey and stir. Slice a piece of honey wheat bread and spread some homemade butter all while basking in the fruits of your labor. Give yourself a pat on the back for making something from scratch and enjoy the moment.
The butter should keep in the fridge for a couple of weeks. You can keep the buttermilk (I did) to make buttermilk biscuits or whatever people use with buttermilk. I put my butter and buttermilk in separate mason jars and reservd a spot for both in the fridge.
I’ll share some pictures to prove that making butter at home really does work.
This is what it looks like when the butter separates from the buttermilk.
Strain and rinse the butter.