Have you ever wondered about the differences in the nuances of butter, ghee and butter oil? It is an easily misunderstood concept, since few of us actually have the time to produce these treasured foods in our busy lives. While we tend to rely on experts to make these vital nutritive substances, it is important to be well-versed in their preparation to gain a full understanding of their importance in your daily life. After all, that neatly wrapped up, rectangular stick of butter in your refrigerator didn’t just appear there naturally.
Butter is made from cream (the fat-dense liquid skimmed from the top of milk) through a rather simple churning process. As the cream is agitated, fat adheres to form the solid substance we know as butter. In milder sweet butter, fresh cream is used, while cultured butter requires a slight souring or addition of cultures to the cream. To understand this most effectively, give it a try yourself with this simple home recipe from Nourishing Traditions. For a more detailed recipe, visit my post on Homemade vs. Storebought Butter.
Makes about 1/2 lb butter
Use 1 quart raw cream (for cultured butter, first leave cream out at room temperature for about 8 hrs to sour)
Place cream in food processor fitted with steel blade and process until butter forms. Pour butter and buttermilk over a strainer set over a container. Transfer butter to a stainless steel or wooden bowl and press out remaining buttermilk with a wooden spoon or paddle, adding to the buttermilk already in the container from the straining process. Wash butter by adding a little cold water and continuing to press. Repeat until butter no longer exudes butter milk. Form butter into a ball, pat dry with paper towels and place in a crock or container. Save buttermilk and place in glass containers. Cover both and chill well.
Ghee simply put, is butter heated to the point at which milk solids are separated and removed, and water evaporates leaving a golden-yellow oil. You will hear it referred to as “the Royal Oil,” “clarified butter” and “butter oil” but it is not to be confused with the High Vitamin Butter Oil used as a supplement. Grass fed ghee is a great culinary alternative to butter for those with dairy intolerances, as it is casein and lactose-free, and allows for easier digestion. Furthermore, it has a lighter, less heavy flavor and keeps for long durations of time without refrigeration. Many people, following ayurvedic tradition, also use ghee as a fabulous, toxin-free moisturizer for healthy skin.
Interested in how to make ghee at home? Check out The Glee of Grass Fed Ghee
High Vitamin Butter Oil
High Vitamin Butter Oil (HVBO), as Dr. Weston A. Price originally made it, is extracted from butter without heat. The oils are centrifuge extracted and carefully reviewed to include only a small percent of the most valuable and potent collected oil in the final product. Because of the fragility of nutrients and susceptibility to denaturation on exposure to heat, it is only through this very specific centrifuging process that HVBO yields a strong bioavailability of the X-Factor. In this form, the essential components of HVBO work synergistically with Cod Liver Oil to form the ultimate essential fatty-acid balancing duo.
This is one you may want to leave to the experts...unless of course you are well-versed in the art of using a centrifuge.
In your search to find these products, selection is crucial and manufacturing tactics can be misleading. We are dedicated to supplying you with carefully researched and tested products. Butter is best if homemade or locally made from raw cream if possible, and from grassfed pastured cows. If you are looking for some trustworthy ghee, Pure Grassfed Organic Ghee is a nutrient-loaded and convenient option. As for high vitamin butter oil, we suggest Weston A. Price Foundation approved Green Pasture High Vitamin Butter Oil, also available in a High Vitamin Oil/Cod Liver Oil Blend.