07 March 2014

31 Days of MOO No. 7 - Two Easy Ways to MOO Buttermilk

Buttermilk is an ingredient in so many recipes, particularly baking and dressings. It's also one of those ingredients that isn't on the regular shopping list and can blow the food budget if you have to buy it.

You don't. It's another item you can cross off the list if you already have milk (fresh or powdered), vinegar and/or lemons on the list.

Buttermilk is so easy to MOO, even easier than it is to MOO yoghurt, that I make it all the time to use in baking. MOO buttermilk can be made with fresh milk or milk that has gone sour. It literally takes me two minutes to throw it together, let it sit overnight and then in the morning I have fresh buttermilk for  pancakes (buttermilk makes the lightest pancakes).

I use homemade to replace regular milk in baking, and for marinating meat and chicken (a buttermilk marinade makes meat mouthwateringly tender) and of course for buttermilk dressing for green salads.

MOO Buttermilk No. 1

This is great for when you need a small quantity of buttermilk for pancakes or marinating. It's not true cultured buttermilk but it does just as good a job for a fraction of the price.

1 cup milk (fresh or made from powdered milk)
1 tsp white vinegar or lemon juice

Stir the vinegar into the cup of milk. Let the milk sit for 10 minutes to curdle, it's ready to use.

MOO Buttermilk No. 2

Just like MOOing yoghurt, you need a cultured starter. For this MOO buttermilk you'll need to buy cultured buttermilk (available in the milk cabinet at your supermarket). Freeze what's left of the starter to use to make more.

3-1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup cultured buttermilk, at room temperature

Mix ingredients in a sterilised jar and cover with a tea towel (don't put a lid on it, it needs a little air to work). Let the mixture sit in warm spot for 24 hours (the top of the fridge is good for this, or a sunny windowsill). After 24 hours you'll have a fresh batch of buttermilk, ready to use. Makes 1 litre.

This buttermilk can be frozen.
Remember to keep 1/2 a cup to start the next batch.
You can use any milk, fresh or powdered, full cream or skim, even soured milk. Full cream works better than skim, but it will still work.

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