Speaking of butter . . .

caflowerluverNovember 11, 2007

At Costco I saw butter from Ireland. Would that be any different from butter made here in the US? Does it have a higher fat or cream content? I was almost curious enough to buy it but it was a lot more expensive. Any one ever buy it and can give a review?


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Here's a tangential topic-
Does anyone use a butter bell? Is one brand better than another? I have to send one as a gift and would like a really nice one.
Thanks and sorry for hijacking the topic!

    Bookmark   November 11, 2007 at 1:45AM
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Yes it has a higher fat content - and it is absolutely delicious! I have been ordering it from an import store in the NE, and I am glad to hear it is beginning to show up in local groceries. I'll be looking for it.

Below is a link to a recent review of Kerrygold ...

Here is a link that might be useful: Kerrygold review

    Bookmark   November 11, 2007 at 2:12AM
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I have a block of Kerrygold Irish salted butter right here in my freezer.
Written on the side it says: "Pasteurized cream, 80% fat, maximum 2% salt".
It does taste very rich and I buy it from time to time for DH, who loves to spread it on his bread at evening supper.

I have a piece of salted Spanish butter here as well which also contains 80% fat with salt at 1.2%.
It also tastes good but not quite as creamy as the Irish.


    Bookmark   November 11, 2007 at 5:21AM
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All the European butters I've used have a higher fat count and are very yummy.

As to a butter bell, I used one for many years, then switched to a butter boat (see link below). With a butter bell, the butter is smashed into the bell (2-piece dish) and the bell is dropped into the base which has water in it. The butter always sets in water. The water needs to be refreshed frequently, and the butter must be fairly soft to be able to press into the bell. CAUTION: Make sure the bell is absolutely dry before pressing the softened butter into the bell or it will fall out of the bell when set inside the water. During the hotter months, I also chill the water in the refrigerator before adding a new/full bell of butter. Warm water can also cause the butter to slip out of the bell.

In a butter boat (3-pieces - including a lid), the butter is NOT setting in the water, but resting in a butter dish that is sitting on the base which has water in it. You can place a stick of butter in this - as is - fresh from the refrigerator or freezer.

A butter bell keeps butter a little more solid in the summer than a butter boat.

We just purchased a set of individual butter bells yesterday. They were so cute, I just couldn't resist.


Here is a link that might be useful: Cook Street

    Bookmark   November 11, 2007 at 7:22AM
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Irish butter is wonderful!

    Bookmark   November 11, 2007 at 9:47AM
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I have a butter bell and hate it!...every time you want a bit of butter you have to turn the thing over and it drips water on the counter.
I just do as my grandmother did and keep a piece of butter in a covered dish on the counter or in the cupboard for spreading on toast and popping into a pan to fry an egg. It doesn't stay but more than a few days and the alst dab is every bit as good as the first. I use a glass dish ment for that...my grandmother used a pie dish and a cup with a broken handle to cover the butter. The old patternglass sets all had butter dishes...but alsa because they were used so often, they broke and are very scarce and expensive.

Never had Irish butter that I remember....now I have something else to look for!
Linda C

    Bookmark   November 11, 2007 at 9:57AM
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Ellen, I love my butter bell. I had an Emile Henry Cookware bell; I didn't like it be cause it had a tapered cup that the butter went into and a ridge that you had to scrap around to get all of the butter. Look for a flat bottom cup which makes it easier to get all of the butter. I did find one from a potter and like it just fine. The link below is one with a flat bottom cup.

With that said, I have been wanting to try the butter boat and will do so when I need a new BB.

Here is a link that might be useful: Butter Bell

    Bookmark   November 11, 2007 at 10:13AM
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Thanks for the good info!
I did a bit of research last night and found the butter boats, which people did seem to prefer, however that Cook Street link baffles me. QVC no longer sells them and butter boat's website doesn't offer a way to buy them.
Otherwise Amazon offers a type by L.Tremain that also seems to have favorable reviews. Dropping the butter in to the water seems yucky, Since I can't look around, except on the 'Net, I'd rather just buy what others have had success with.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2007 at 11:02AM
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Thanks everyone for the information. I think I will buy some for the holidays and give it a try.

I have had a butter boat for years. I love the fact that it keeps the butter fresh but soft enough to spread. I bought mine online but I can't remember where. My only complaint is mine is slightly more shallow then a stick of butter so have to either put the butter in as slices or shave some off the top.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2007 at 12:37PM
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I love my butter bell. Since i do buy European butter it doesn't come in sticks so the boat has no appeal for me. To me havoing it in water is the whole point; it creates a seal against the air. That may be why it keeps the butter fresher longer than the boat. It doesn't make the butter wet!

The bell only holds a small amount of butter, less than a stick, which is why I like it. Since we try to NOT use much butter just keeping it on the counter or in cupboard means it goes bad. I keep my bell right by the sink so I remember to change the water. And I can keep butter out and spreadable for over a week in the bell. So much better than only having it frozen! My mother who lives alone loves it for the same reason. A family who uses a quarter pound in a few days would have no need for it.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2007 at 1:17PM
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I am looking to buy a Cook Street Butter Boat in Blue flowers. Do you know where I can find one besides Ebay?

If so please contact me: nuwer@cox.net

    Bookmark   December 18, 2007 at 5:52PM
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Cook's Illustrated (or some magazine) just did a report on butters and concluded that Land'o'Lakes ultra Creamy butter was everybit as good as the imported stuff.

    Bookmark   December 18, 2007 at 6:07PM
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We love the imported European butters. DH buys them occasionally, as a treat, to use on our English muffins.

As to storing butter--it's really not recommended that it be stored at room temperature, not even in a butter bell. As a matter of fact, according to the manufacturer's it shouldn't even be stored in the butter keeper in the fridge. All the experts I've read, say it should be kept in the coldest part of the fridge.

Of course, in years past, that meant the butter was pretty unspreadable. But today, it's not a problem. If you zap your butter for 10-15 seconds (depending upon the wattage) in your microwave, you have the best of both--proper storage to keep it fresh and safe AND it's easy to spread when you need to. Although, you can't do that with the imported, foil-wrapped butters unless you remove them from their wrappers.

    Bookmark   December 18, 2007 at 7:55PM
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