Three creative twists on classic compounded butter

  • Chicago Tribune
  • Tuesday, April 16, 2013 10:49am
  • Life

In “Flavored Butters” ($12.95), author Lucy Vaserfirer delivers a number of variations on compound butter that surprise — French radishes, caviar, truffles — going beyond classics like garlic butter.

These butters can transform a grilled steak, steamed vegetables or pasta.

To make them, simply mix as directed, then chill before using.

Or shape them into a log first, following her directions:

To form into a log: Place the finished butter in the center of a sheet of parchment (or wax) paper. Bring the top of the paper over the butter. Press the butter into a log. Roll the log up in the paper and twist the ends in opposite directions. Chill until firm.

Fennell butter

Blend 1 stick softened unsalted butter, 1 clove garlic, grated, 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice, 1 teaspoon fennel seeds, toasted, ground, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt and 1 pinch hot red pepper flakes.

Chipotle butter

Force 4 chipotles in adobo sauce through a fine-mesh sieve to remove skins/seeds. Blend the puree with 1 stick softened unsalted butter, 1 clove garlic, grated, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt and a generous pinch toasted, ground cumin.

Apricot-almond butter

Put 6 dried apricot halves in a small bowl; cover with boiling water. Soak until rehydrated, 10-12 minutes. Drain apricots on paper towels, 1 minute. Pulse apricots in food processor with 1 stick softened unsalted butter, ¼ cup sliced toasted almonds, 2 tablespoons powdered sugar and ¼ teaspoon vanilla.

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