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Is there a butter backlash? for the purists ...


Gifted Gourmet
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article from the Independent UK

Butter has had a battering in recent years from the health police, and it's true that it's not a good idea to use it too liberally. But while the shops are full of butter alternatives, I've never quite got the point of using something that is supposed to taste like the real thing...  Nothing beats buttery toast, butter shortbread, shrimps potted in butter or garlic butter melting on a juicy steak. Sometimes there is no substitute.... Butter has always had a place in cooking..  So much of our traditional baking depends on butter. The farmhouse baking tradition came about because there was always butter ...

So, are you one of the true butter purists?

Do you believe that there are dishes in which only butter will suffice?

Indulge in preparing compound butters? Which ones?

Melissa Goodman aka "Gifted Gourmet"

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Do you believe that there are dishes in which only butter will suffice?

Indulge in preparing compound butters? Which ones?

I've tried to make do with "I can't believe it's not" butter and true enough, in some applications, it's not horrible. I'll spritz it on steamed vegetables if my jeans have shrunk ( :shock: ) in the laundry. :wink: But (as the song says) there ain't nothin' like the real thing, baby. I love butter with some tomato paste and fresh herb (basil, oregano typically) whipped in and will use it on just about any summer vegetable.

Judy Jones aka "moosnsqrl"

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My four year old will tell you that butter makes the world go 'round. He's not wrong. There is no great substitute for butter. Butter that toast, then eat something less fatty for lunch and enjoy a nice walk sometime in your day. If folks would be less obsessive and do things in moderation life would be a lot more pleasant.

mmmmmm butter.

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From a different angle---Put a pat of oleo on a plate and set it in your kitchen window---a month later the only change will be that it may have melted--mold leaves it alone, roaches don't touch it, mice avoid it, and it will not grow bacteria. It is the teflon of the culinary world. Why would you put that in your body? As Julia said, and I paraphrase, the only substitute for butter is heavy cream. I do love good olive oil.

Cooking is chemistry, baking is alchemy.

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Butter is essential. Life is too short to use a butter substitute (unless it is really good olive oil).

John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

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So, are you one of the true butter purists?

Do you believe that there are dishes in which only butter will suffice?

Indulge in preparing compound butters? Which ones?

Yes.

Yes, all of them.

Yep, my family's favorite is made with reduced red wine, shallot, and tarragon. Gorgeous purple stuff that gets made usually for hot-rock cooking and fondues, but is great on a steak or a potato too.

DSC01760.JPG

Sorry, pic's a little out of focus.

Edited by pork (log)
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In an effort to control cholesterol, I bought my SO I Can't Believe it's Not Butter. He used a marking pen to mark out "not". :biggrin: I think it went into the trash.

I absolutely detest the fake butter taste of margarine or Pan and Grill Oil, used in cheap restaurants.

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I'm very much a believer in butter. If you need to cut something out of your diet for health reasons, then do so - substitutes for the real thing (fake-tasting low-fat ice cream, artificial sweeteners in my coffee) do nothing for me but make me crave what they're replacing.

"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

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So, are you one of the true butter purists?

YES! However, I try to buy butter made only with milk from grass-fed cows whenever possible. I also make my own butter with cultured raw milk from grass-fed cows. I am of the school that what an animal eats makes a difference - particularly in their fats. Butter from pastured animals - especially when the grass is fast growing - is naturally "butter" yellow. This kind of butter contains omega-3, CLA and what Weston A. Price called Factor-X. AND, it sure tastes GOOD :wub: . Folks interested in a non-mainstream view of fats can learn more here: http://www.westonaprice.org/knowyourfats/index.html

I also use natural lard and duck fat from free-ranging animals, and extra virgin olive oil. I subscribe to David Rosengarten's olive oil club - and receive from him, his pick of freshly pressed EVOO every three months. I use the oils raw - mostly in salad dressings, and to drizzle atop soups and other dishes, as appropriate. I cook with the more stable saturated fats.

And no, I do not run a farm :raz: . I just have the good fortune to live near several conscientious farmers.

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Hi my name is tracey and I like butter and I am not alone

http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=60498&hl=

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I never gave up on butter. I never trusted the "artificial" stuff, it may have a base of corn oil but has to be chemically and mechanically manipulated to make it solid.

In recent years there has been a lot of research shows that hydrogenated stuff is of more concern than natural butter.

As far as cholesterol is concerned, I have always believed it is genetics more than consumption that determines the levels. I eat a high cholesterol diet but my tests have never showed it higher than 180, usually below 150. Many of my ancestors lived extremely long lives.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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I do have a "tub o' funk" in my icebox... it's for my husband. I think that he is the only person in the world that doesn't like real butter on bread. Seriously. He loves real butter melted on hot things, but he doesn't like it straight up. Sigh.

He's awfully cute tho'. :wub:

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There is something sublime about a good peice of toasted bread spread with Lescure Salted Butter from Charente. Plain and Simple :biggrin:

Smell and taste are in fact but a single composite sense, whose laboratory is the mouth and its chimney the nose. - Anthelme Brillat-Savarin

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All this talk of butter is getting to me. I am going to leave the computer, go out to the kitchen and make a batch of cornbread. I need this, we have a Pacific storm coming in and it is cloudy and gloomy and comfort food is acutely necessary.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Do you believe that there are dishes in which only butter will suffice?

I'm not a complere zealot. I can use nonbutter on some vegetables. But for breads, almost all sweets and baked goods, I vastly prefer butter. I shudder at the thought of buttercream made with margerine. :raz:

"If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced" - Vincent Van Gogh
 

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... I shudder at the thought of buttercream made with margerine.  :raz:

Me too. And my daughter as well, who had me search all of NJ for a genuine buttercream when I was too tired to make her birthday cake for 40 dear teenagers. Somethings tste OK with olive oil, otherwise we use butter. In baked goods, we use fruits sometimes instead of butter. But that's NOT margarine!

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I grew up with margarine ("reduced fat"), so it doesn't taste too bad to me, but we switched to butter a couple years ago and haven't looked back. I've found I need to use less butter on things because it tastes so much better, so it's probably a wash calorie-wise.

Best compound butter to date: purple chive flowers, white thyme flowers, salt, pepper. Cut coins and let melt over grilled steak. Tasty and pretty.

Marcia.

Don't forget what happened to the man who suddenly got everything he wanted...he lived happily ever after. -- Willy Wonka

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Ya' know, I'm on a weird diet this month. All liquids, but high caloric intake (2500k a day) and loads of sodium. I wonder... if I heat butter it IS a liquid... do I have to count it as a dairy item? :raz:

More Than Salt

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Cure Cutaneous Lymphoma

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Ya' know, I'm on a weird diet this month. All liquids, but high caloric intake (2500k a day) and loads of sodium. I wonder... if I heat butter it IS a liquid... do I have to count it as a dairy item? :raz:

I want to be on your diet :laugh:. Hollandaise is liquid! So is bacon fat.

PS: I am a guy.

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Eat butter. And eat GOOD quality butter. Land O'Lakes doesn't cut in a world of yellowish, extra creamy Fench, Danish or Vermont butters.

Skimp somewhere else, butter just is not the place.

My favorite compound is simply roasted garlic with salt and pepper. It goes great on just about anything.

Red wine with shallots and herbs ain't to shabby either.

Edited by crusio's (log)
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I've tried. I really have. I was in my corporate cafeteria a few weeks ago and the crock with softened butter for my English muffin was depleted. I got a few of those teeny containers of margarine instead. I'm supposed to be watching my cholesterol.

After I ate my muffin with that awful stuff, I was looking at the label on the top of those little, tiny containers of margarine and realized that the fat per serving was 3 grams -- the same, if not worse, than butter. And, frankly, the trans fat health issues are at least equal to cholesterol health issues. So, what's the point? It tastes crappy and it's not better for you. I suppose not all margarines are equal to butter in fat, but how much are you saving? Enough to ruin a good English muffin? No way!

I feel the same way about Splenda and other artificial sweeteners. Sugar is 16 calories a tablespoon. Do anyone benefit enough from saving 16 or so calories in his or her iced tea that it is worth consuming something that tastes horrid? Again, no way!

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I feel the same way about Splenda and other artificial sweeteners. Sugar is 16 calories a tablespoon.  Do anyone benefit enough from saving 16 or so calories in his or her iced tea that it is worth consuming something that tastes horrid? Again, no way!

For some of us (like me, who has insulin-dependent diabetes) some of us can get enough benefit from this. Here, the particular issue is not calories but how many carbs the sugar contains. Carb-wise, a teaspoon of sugar is equal to eating a few large luscious strawberries, or a couple of squares of chocolate, or a pretty decent serving of yogurt (Greek or Turkish, and full-fat of course. 10 percent fat is even better :smile: ).

With iced tea, for example, I would just skip both sugar and artificial sweetener. But there are certain things that simply HAVE to be sweetened or they are just plain unpleasant (rhubarb and quince are a couple) and if I were using sugar to get the amount of sweetening that they need to taste good, I'd have upped the carb content so much that I would be able to eat only a tiny portion - so artificial sweetener it is, and I can then eat a human-sized amount of them. So I am utterly grateful that artificial sweeteners were invented. They can have their place and are not only for people who are concerned about weight.

Butter, now, is a different story. If you do have cholesterol concerns, there are perfectly edible and tasty substitutes, such as olive oil.

Butter was never present in our house growing up - this was when it was believed to be oh-so-bad for you, and margarine was meant to be better. My parents diligently followed such teachings and so it was margarine all the way. Horrible, nasty-tasting stuff it is too.

Cream, bacon, and full-fat milk were never around either due to the same concerns. And as soon as I left home I started buying butter, lard, bacon, ghee, etc. Margarine would never darken my doorstep. I did eat margarine inadvertently at a friend's house a couple of years back - I'd forgotten quite how bad it tastes. I really don't understand how anyone can tolerate the taste.

So I suppose my butter backlash has lasted several decades now.

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