Thursday, June 25, 2015

Friends Don't Let Friends: Buy Bad Butter

I have to admit that I had two big food "fears" before we went vegan, now nearly 7 years ago.

And that fear was all around toast.

As my family can attest, I frigging love toast.  And not just toast, really anything warm and bread-y that likes to be slathered in butter and jam... or cinnamon sugar, or agave syrup, or salt, or... well, you get my point.  We're talking all kinds of toasted bread, bagels, crumpets, english muffins, scones.  Hell, I liked eating untoasted bread with butter and sugar and I've been known to scrape out of the butter container with a bunch of wheat thins.

I am not proud of this but there you go.

So, yes, toast (and baking of course) was heavily on my mind.  And thank goodness for EarthBalance in all of its varieties.  It's great.  It tastes great, melts perfectly and works amazingly in all of my baked goods.

But then there was the palm oil issue and we've been ever increasingly concerned about buying into that.  Plus, it's always good to have another option.

That's why I'm soooo happy to have bought our new favorite cookbook - The Homemade Vegan Pantry by Miyoko Schinner (of the awesome Miyoko's Kitchen and her famous cheeses - go buy some now!)

I've started working my way through her book because everything looks wonderful and easy to make.  Most use basic available ingredients (although for the butter I did order the liquid lecithin from Amazon.  You don't use a lot so one bottle or two will make a ton of this recipe).

Making this butter - the Glorious Butterless Butter - literally took me 5 minutes, a measuring cup and the blender. I added the soy milk, coconut oil, canola oil, salt and lecithin to the blender, blended it up and then poured it into a silicone mold we had.  A few hours later, it was ready to go!

 I was dying to dig into this but held off until breakfast the next day.  After chilling this was a perfect, crumbly butter. Not too salty with a delicious taste cold or melted, which it did perfectly.

I cannot recommend it enough.

Although you should just go out and buy this book asap (I know it's going to be a new staple, reached for constantly), here is the butter recipe:

Glorious Butterless Butter by Miyoko Schinner

1 1/2 C melted refined coconut oil
1/2 C non-dairy milk (I used soy for the neutral taste and fat content)
1/4 C canola, grapeseed or light olive oil (I used a fancy canola)
1/2 tsp sea salt
2 tsp liquid lecithin

Measure this all out, add it to the blender and process at medium speed for about a minute. Pour into any container (silicone is best I think, for popping it out easily) and then chill in the fridge until hard.

It will keep 3 - 4 weeks or several months in the freezer.

She also has variations for a cultured butter version, really hard butter for making stuff like puff pastry or croissants, whipped butter or unsalted butter.

It really is too pretty, right? Gah! I'm in love with it.

We also made one of her other condiments - homemade ketchup.  I did a hickory smoke-maple version but you are going to have to buy to book to get that recipe for yourself!