Unsalted butter (Recipe: chive and parsley butter)
Visitors to the 2009 Iowa State Fair saw Michael Jackson's moon walk.
At this summer's fair, they'll see Neil Armstrong's moon walk.
I guess one moon walk sculpted in hundreds of pounds of unsalted butter just wasn't enough for Iowa.
Bakers prefer unsalted butter for its consistency. Salted butters vary in the amount of salt they contain, so by starting with unsalted butter, a baker can determine exactly how much salt to use in a recipe.
I wonder how much salt goes into a butter moon walk.
What is unsalted butter?
A solid spread, generally made from cow's milk, made by beating cream until the fat globules adhere. Unsalted butter has no added salt; regular butter has varying amounts of salt.
How/where to store:
In the main part of the refrigerator (not in the door), for up to a month past the sell-by date. Or in the freezer, for up to six months.
More facts about unsalted butter, and ingredient photos, in The Perfect Pantry:
Unsalted butter (Recipe: Scotch shortbread)
Chive and parsley butter
If you have time, make this several hours, or even several days, ahead, to allow the flavors to bloom into the butter. If you wish, add one clove of roasted garlic, and vary the herbs to your taste and to what's available in your garden. The recipe can be doubled or tripled (or more); precise measurements are not important.
1 stick unsalted butter (1/2 cup, or 4 ounces, or 115 grams)
1 tsp roughly chopped chives or garlic chives
2 tsp roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley
Pinch of kosher salt, to taste
Let the butter soften slightly at room temperature, approximately one hour.
In a food processor, chop the chives and parsley together until finely minced. Add the butter and salt to the processor, and pulse until well combined. Taste, and add salt if needed.
Cover the butter with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or up to several days.
Other recipes that use unsalted butter:
Perfect pie crust, from Simply Recipes
Brown butter baumkuchen, from Cast Sugar
Key lime raspberry bars, from Culinary Concoctions by Peabody
French pear tart, from On the Road and In the Kitchen with Dorie
Chilean sea bass with butter, caper, lemon sauce, from Culinary Disasters