Buttermilk is an essential ingredient in many recipes, such as pancakes or waffles! But you don’t have to wait until breakfast time to enjoy buttermilk; it can also be eaten straight up with a spoon or poured over ice cream at any point during the day! In this article, we will explore how to make buttermilk in a few different ways!
What Is Buttermilk?
Buttermilk is a dairy product people use in cooking or consume as an iced beverage. Natural bacteria cultures the milk, causing it to thicken and sour. Buttermilk has been around for centuries, with records of it being produced in ancient Rome. The word “buttermilk” actually comes from the old Norse word “byte-melk”, which translates to “cow’s meal.” It is believed to originate from an old Germanic custom where people would drink buttermilk, otherwise known as curdled milk because it was too costly to waste any food.
Today, commercial buttermilk is made by adding cultures to skim or low-fat milk, then allowing the bacteria in the culture to ferment the sugar in the milk (lactose) into lactic acid in much the same way yogurt is made. This ensures a tart flavor in every glass.
There are only two ingredients you need in this recipe to make buttermilk:
1. Pour the milk into a pitcher and add four tablespoons of vinegar for every cup of milk you’re using (if you want to make more or less buttermilk, keep track of this ratio).
2. Beat the mixture with a whisk until it’s foamy and slightly bubbly.
3. Cover the container and let it sit at room temperature overnight (about 12 hours).
4. In the morning, your buttermilk will be ready!
The ingredients you need for this recipe are a little more expensive, but it’s a fun experiment that might yield delicious results!
-Yogurt with live active cultures (look for the words “live and active cultures” on the tub)
1. Pour 1 cup of whole milk into a microwave-safe container, then heat it in the microwave until boiling. You can also boil your milk over the stove if you prefer.
2. Add an equal amount of yogurt to each amount of milk.
3. Stir the milk and yogurt thoroughly with a whisk or spoon, then cover with aluminum foil or plastic wrap and let it sit in a warm spot (like on top of your fridge) for about 24 hours to allow the cultures to work their magic!
4. In 24 hours, you’ll have buttermilk that will keep in the refrigerator for up to 10 days! If your mixture hasn’t thickened correctly after sitting for several hours, add an extra tablespoon of yogurt per cup of milk used and try again later.
The ingredients you’ll need for this recipe are fairly inexpensive, and you can find them in most grocery stores.
-1 quart of milk (you can use whole, 2%, or skim)
-2 teaspoons of cream of tartar
-3 tablespoons of water
1. Pour the milk into a non-aluminum saucepan and bring it to a full boil (but do not let it overflow!) over medium heat on the stove. Stir frequently to make sure milk doesn’t burn on the bottom of the pan.
2. Remove from heat and allow milk to cool until lukewarm by slowly adding small amounts into a separate bowl or container. You can speed up this process by adding ice cubes or cold water to the pan, but make sure you don’t add too much!
3. Mix the cream of tartar with the water and add it to the mixture. Stir and cover the container with a lid and let it sit at room temperature for 12 hours.
4. In the morning, your buttermilk will be ready! The milk should have thickened into something similar to yogurt. If it hasn’t thickened correctly after sitting for several hours, add another tablespoon of cream of tartar per cup of milk used and try again later. If you want to sweeten your buttermilk, try adding one teaspoon of honey or sugar to each cup of finished buttermilk.
This recipe has similar ingredients to the first, with just a slightly different process!
-1 quart of milk (you can use whole, 2%, or skim)
-Lemon juice or white vinegar
1. Pour the milk into a saucepan and heat it over medium heat until lukewarm. You don’t want the milk too hot or cold! Just warm enough to be comfortable on your skin. If you have small children who would like to help out, now is a good time to let them lend a hand!
2. Once the milk is lukewarm, stir in one tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar for every cup of milk.
3. Let the mixture sit for 10 minutes, then pour it into a jar or covered container and let it sit at room temperature overnight (for about 8 hours.) The next morning, congratulations! You have made your own buttermilk that will keep in your refrigerator for up to two weeks if you don’t use it all! If your buttermilk hasn’t thickened after sitting overnight, add another tablespoon of lemon juice per cup of milk used and give it more time to thicken.
You’re ready to make your buttermilk now! One cup of finished buttermilk can be substituted for an equal amount of regular milk in almost any recipe (except recipes that call for cultured buttermilk, like buttermilk biscuits) so go wild with it! Buttermilk pancakes are a classic, as are waffles or muffins, and you can also try using this thicker type of milk in mashed potatoes or even homemade salad dressings. Experiment with these different recipes until you find the perfect one!