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Butter or margarine: which is the better choice?

  • Reading time Reading time: 4 minutes
butter or margarine: which is the better choice
When we choose between butter and margarine, we are really choosing between two culinary philosophies that reflect different dietary preferences, health recommendations and tastes.

When we choose between butter and margarine, we are really choosing between two culinary philosophies that reflect different dietary preferences, health recommendations and tastes.


In this article, we will explore the key differences between butter and margarine, including their ingredients, health impact, kitchen use and taste, to help you choose the right source of fat to use in the kitchen.


Ingredients.


Butter is a natural product that is obtained by whipping cream until the fat separates from the liquid. It contains mainly saturated fat and to a lesser extent some water, milk proteins and vitamins such as A, D and E.


Margarine, on the other hand, is a product of modern food science, created from vegetable oils that are hydrogenated to make them solid at room temperature. In addition to vegetable oils, margarine often contains emulsifiers, colourings, flavourings and preservatives to improve its taste, texture and shelf life.


How to make homemade butter?


Homemade butter is one of the culinary delights that surpasses most commercial variants with its freshness and rich taste. The making process is surprisingly simple and does not require any special kitchen tools.

Necessities:


- Whipping cream (minimum 30% fat)

- Large mixing bowl

- Mixer, hand or stand

- Strainer or cheesecloth

- Cold water

- Salt (optional)


Steps:


1. Preparing the cream


Start with the chilled whipping cream, which you pour into the bowl of your mixer. The amount of cream you use will determine the amount of butter you will make. You will make about 225 grams of butter from about 500 ml of cream.


2. Whip the cream


Using a mixer, start whipping the cream on medium to high speed. The cream will go through several stages: first it will turn into whipped cream, then it will become thicker and thicker. Continue mixing until the cream separates into solid butter particles and a liquid called buttermilk (whey).


3. Separate the butter from the whey


When you notice that the cream has separated, stop the mixer. Use a strainer or cheesecloth to separate the solid butter from the liquid whey. You can save the whey for other recipes.


4. Rinse the butter


Transfer the butter solids back to the bowl and add the cold water. Using your hands or a spoon, gently squeeze the butter to extract the remaining whey. Change the water and repeat the process until the water is clear. This helps to remove the remaining whey, which can shorten the shelf life of the butter.


5. Salt as desired


You can salt your butter if you wish. Add salt to taste and mix well.


6. Shape and store


Shape the butter into the desired shape and store in the fridge or freezer. Homemade butter will stay fresh for a few weeks in the fridge, but can last for several months in the freezer.


Tips:


- Cream temperature: For best results, keep the cream cold, but not too cold.

- Variations: You can experiment by adding different flavours to the butter, such as herbs, garlic or honey.

- Use butter: Homemade butter is great on fresh bread, but you can also use it in any recipe that calls for butter.


Making homemade butter is not only easy, it''s also a fun way to add a personal touch to your culinary creations. With the freshness and full flavour that homemade butter brings, you may discover a new love for cooking and baking.


Health impact: saturated fats versus trans fats


For a long time, butter was thought to be less healthy than margarine because of its high saturated fat content. Saturated fat has been linked to higher cholesterol levels and a risk of cardiovascular disease. Margarine, based on vegetable oils, has been promoted as a healthier alternative. However, further studies have shown that some types of margarine contain trans fats which are even more harmful to the cardiovascular system. Nowadays, trans-fat-free margarines using non-hydrogenated vegetable oils are also available on the market, making them a better choice for health.


Use in the kitchen: taste and texture


When it comes to cooking and baking, butter and margarine are not always interchangeable. Butter is known for its rich creaminess and its ability to add a depth of flavour to dishes that margarine struggles to replicate. It is ideal for baking desserts, sauces and preparing dishes where the taste of butter is crucial. Margarine, which is easier to spread and has a more even texture, is often the choice for everyday use such as sandwiches or as a spread on bread.


Taste: Authentic versus artificial


The flavour of butter is deep, rich and authentically milky, making it indispensable in recipes that call for pronounced dairy flavours. Margarine attempts to mimic this flavour with various additives, but many feel that it falls short of butter''s authenticity. Some newer margarines have improved their flavour profile, but the difference remains noticeable, especially in bakery products.


The choice between butter and margarine depends on personal dietary beliefs, health goals and culinary needs. While butter offers a richness of taste and tradition, margarine brings flexibility and the possibility of healthier choices.


Most importantly, whatever the choice, we should always look for quality and focus on moderation, as both butter and margarine are high in calories and fat, which can affect our health if consumed in excessive amounts.

BAMChocolate.com - The sweetest online shop for high quality baking products. BAM products are for everyone who loves to create with high-quality ingredients and sophisticated flavours, even in their own home kitchen.

O avtorju

Ana F.
Ustvarjalka vsebin
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