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Clarifying Butter for Backpacking and Long Term Pantry Storage and Use a Sealer to Make Individual Packets with Video

I love butter.  Butter makes everything better, and unless you are vegan or have some aversion to dairy then you probably agree. Not that nasty food product impersonating butter - margarine (yuk!), but real sweet cream, lightly salted and churned until it solidifies into a little concentrated piece of heaven. Here is a post for anyone who wants to make butter a shelf-stable addition to your pantry or package it up to enjoy on the trail or away from home.

Salted butter can Butter is graded by the USDA based on aroma, flavor, and texture.  Grade AA is the best, then Grade A, with Grade B reserved only for cooking or industrial purposes. The flavor of butter can vary depending upon the diet of the cows it came from, as well as the amount of fat and milk solids the butter contains.
backpacking butter
Clarifying Butter for Long Term Storage
While I am an unabashed butter fan, there are a few downsides to butter.  First is that good quality butter is quite expensive compared to artificial margarine. The price of butter can fluctuate with the national milk supply, which is impacted by weather and demand for other dairy related products like ice cream. Furthermore, those with cholesterol issues probably shouldn't overindulge in a source of pure animal fat like butter.  Fortunately for me, this isn't an issue.  :-)

Clarifying the butter is a process that removes the milk solids and water from the butter.  The milk solids include casein and lactose, so clarified butter can often be tolerated by those with milk allergies. Clarifying also renders the butter shelf stable and increasing the smoke point to 485* vs. 350*, so it's more suitable for frying. 

Filter Your Clarified Butter to Remove Small Particles

Sooo, technically, once butter is clarified, it's not really butter anymore!  The term for the oil that remains once the solids are removed is actually called butteroil.  The good news is that butteroil contains fat soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K.  And of course you can store it in the pantry instead of the fridge!  In the following video, I mention that the jar pictured above is over 6 months old.

Once your butter is clarified, you can package it in individual serving sizes for use in your lunchbox or on the trail.  The same technique is useful for peanut butter, oil, or any small package you may want to enjoy away from home.

Small Happy Packages of Buttery Goodness

If you want to see the process every little step of the way, here is a video from my Youtube channel!  Enjoy, and Happy Hiking ;-)

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