In the process of making butter, pasteurized cream is churned to produce butter. While butter contains about 20% water, the remainder of the material released by the churning of the cream is known as buttermilk. Buttermilk is a solution of residual fat, protein, lactose, and minerals in the water. Buttermilk in liquid form is used as a food ingredient, but for stability and convenience, it is usually dried into buttermilk powder.
There are lots of foods that are delicious when buttermilk is added, for example, buttermilk biscuits, buttermilk pancakes, sauces, and creamy dressings. Here is a resourceful guide on how to make buttermilk at home.
How to Make Buttermilk
There are a couple of ways for making buttermilk but even with slight variations, you will get the same end product.
1. Cultured Buttermilk
The best way to make buttermilk is to make cultured butter. Cultured butter will have a liquid byproduct called cultured buttermilk.
The first thing you should do is culture the cream with mesophilic aromatic cheese cultures. Heat the cream to 77 degrees F. You will then need to add 1/8 teaspoon of mesophilic aromatic type B culture to a gallon of cream. Mix it well and culture it at 74-77 degrees F for at least 12 hours.
Milk kefir grains could also be used to culture the cream by adding one teaspoon to 1-4 cups of cream. Culture for 12 hours. Now proceed to turn the cream into butter by placing it in the freezer for a few hours. Remove it from the freezer then put the cream in a bowl and use a mixer to mix. Once the butter starts to form, reduce the mixer speed to allow butter to form,
Wash the butter with clear water then press out the buttermilk until the water starts to run clear.
2. Popular Homemade Buttermilk
This is the simplest way as all you need to do is buy buttermilk from the store and take 1 tablespoon of it per cup of fresh milk. Stir it up and leave it at room temperature, it will thicken over time.
You can also use lemon juice or vinegar and add it to fresh milk and leave for 5 minutes. This will acidify the milk and remember to have the ratio at 1 tablespoon per cup of milk.
3. Other Creative ways of making Buttermilk
Buy a starter culture and add it to fresh milk and let the milk sit at room temperature. This might take a few days for the process to be complete.
You can make your started culture at home by letting your regular milk clabber than adding more milk and waiting. Repeat this process 6 to 12 times and you will have a homemade culture you will be keeping in your fridge for use and creating buttermilk.
It is worth noting that the starter culture can be obtained easily online or even in a market with fresh dairy products. Avoid cultures lasting more than 3 weeks as it means it is riddled with preservatives which might affect the quality and taste of your buttermilk.
Storing your homemade Buttermilk
Buttermilk, unlike regular milk, cannot stay fresh for a long time. The fact that buttermilk is used in small portions leaves a lot to spare and it takes 2 weeks for it to reach the highest acidity levels. If you have a lot of leftovers, safely freeze them up. Portion it up so that you only remove a small portion to use.
There you have it, an in-depth guide on how to make buttermilk, and everything you need to know about it. You will now be able to make fabulous buttermilk every time and utilize it in many of your recipes.
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