Butter that has had all the impurities removed by heating it to a liquid, then straining it until left with a clear liquid.
Why would you want to clarify butter? By clarifying the butter, you remove most of the milk fat and water present in butter, leaving only the pure butter fat. This not only tastes wonderful when used to cook with, it also has a higher smoking point that regular butter. Translation: You can use clarified butter to saute and fry with rather than oil for a better flavor!
To Clarify Butter:
- Melt butter over a low heat until it has melted into a liquid. Sediment will fall to the bottom of the pot, while a white foam will form on the top.
- Skim the fat off the top carefully.
- Strain the remaining liquid carefully into a glass container. Make sure none of the sediment gets through the strainer.
- You should be left with a clear golden liquid. The butter is now clarified, and can be used for lobster, crab, baking, and sauteing.
- Use only unsalted butter, as salt can lower the smoking point of the finished product and defeat the purpose of clarifying.
- When making clarified butter always start with at least 30% more unsalted butter than the amount of clarified butter needed, as the volume is reduced during the melting and straining process.
- A stick (8 tablespoons) of butter will produce about 6 tablespoons of clarified butter.
- Once clarified, the butter can be kept in the refrigerator for several months. It will turn slightly grainy, and this normal. Once heated, it reverts back to the clear liquid.
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