Quarter Life Crisis

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Butter

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I didn’t eat butter for a long time. Many people put butter on their bread. And I frequently don’t. It just doesn’t go particularly well with the other stuff you’re likely to put on the bread. If I ate butter, I usually had butter only on fresh bread rolls or hot toast. That was reasonably nice.

At some stage I started to like eating more butter. I think that happened while I was living in England. And it happened because butter in England is salted while German butter usually isn’t. While this makes German butter much better for baking cakes, it also means its taste can be quite dull. So while I had a hard time finding unsalted butter for baking in England, after my return to Germany I had to identify the one or two kinds of salted butter they sell in some supermarkets. It’s more expensive than the normal butter, but I’ll go for it anyway.

Recently I learned a bit more about butter when reading the introduction to Paul Bocuse’s massive recipe book, an 800 page paperback without any photos but an endless number of recipes that are ordered by rough categories and by their French names. The introduction contains some helpful hints by the translators on how to adjust the recipes which are written with the typical stocks of French markets and supermarkets in mind to the bleaker German reality. One thing they note is that there is a much bigger number of dairy products available in France. While crème fraîche may have made it to Germany in the 1970s, many other dairy products haven’t made it. Or require more effort at least.

What I wasn’t aware of before, is that two different types of butter exist. Sweet cream butter and sour cream butter. While the former is prevalent in France, the latter is more common in Germany. And in the recipe book they make a point of telling you to get sweet cream butter for best results. So I decided to see whether I could get it and it’s in fact commonly available, just the smallest part of the butter sold. So I had probably bought it before occasionally, when just randomly grabbing the butter with the nicest packaging. And I must say the sweet cream butter does taste nicer. So I’ll try to get it more often in the future and possibly even train my flatmates to do so as well – although I’m not too optimistic that’ll work.

Another ‘new’ butter I tried out recently was a French salted butter. That looked rather promising as it should combine both of my preferences… but it was a bit of a disappointment. It turned out that their claim of it containing sea salt was more than just marketing jargon but to be taken literally. Instead of being evenly salted, they simply mixed those large grains of sea salt into the butter. Which I fail to see the point of.

October 3, 2005, 1:19

Tagged as food.

Comments

Comment by HEP: User icon

What I wasn’t aware of before, is that two different types of butter exist. Sweet cream butter and sour cream butter.

Welch tolle Erkenntnis! Dazu braucht ein normaler Mensch nicht Bocuse zu lesen - und er würde sie auch kaum für mitteilungswürdig halten.

October 3, 2005, 11:56

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