Maui Girl Cooks

“One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating.” Luciano Pavarotti

Butter & Buttercups

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“Good bread is the most fundamentally satisfying of all foods; and good bread with fresh butter, the greatest of feasts.”      James Beard (1903-1985)

My family is from the beautiful Shenandoah Valley in Virginia, where I lived for just a few years as a child, because my dad was in the Air Force, so we moved around every four years or so.  The saying in my family was that if you held a buttercup flower under your chin, it meant you liked butter.  Of course, I tried it, and my chin glowed buttercup yellow.  Whose wouldn’t?  But it’s a nice thought.

Buttercups

There are those, like my husband, who like the butter to melt into the toast.  I prefer thin, cold slices of butter sitting on my toast, so I know that the butter is really there; I can see it.  I’m like my dad that way.  Of course, I would prefer thick slices of butter, thick enough for my teeth to sink into it, but all things in moderation, at least most of the time.  I generally use unsalted butter for baking.  But for buttering bread, frying eggs or buttering potatoes I’ll take delicious organic pasture butter.  What is pasture butter?  Pasture butter is made from organically raised cows who nosh on what cows are supposed to eat, grass.  It is a starred food from The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth: the Surprising, Unbiased Truth about What You Should Eat and Why {Jonny Bowden, Ph.D., C.N.S.} which I talk about on my Useful Resources page.  Imagine my delight when I saw butter as a starred food; pure joy! Bowden recommends butter from pasture-fed, organically raised cows as a “good fat, alongside nuts, eggs, fish, coconut, avocados and certain oils.”  Mary Enig, Ph.D., one of the country’s most respected lipid biochemists, points out that “butter has been used for centuries and that 30% of the fat from butter is from monounsaturated fat {the same kind that’s in olive oil}.”  Enig states that it is a good source of CLAs {conjugated linoleic acid}, which have anticarcinogenic properties and glycolipids, which have anti-infective properties.  I’m not advocating eating huge amounts of butter, but a little here and there adds enjoyment to one’s dining pleasure, and eating should be a pleasurable experience.

A simple & delicious way to use butter: Mash a clove of garlic into a paste & add it to softened butter.  Mix in salt to taste & whatever finely minced fresh herbs strike your fancy.  Lemon/lime juice or zest to taste is nice.  Add some freshly ground pepper too, if you are so inclined.  Delicious on bread, potatoes, popcorn, fish, etc.  I just made the herb butter below with garlic, chives, marjoram, lime juice, freshly ground pepper & flaky sea salt to taste {I used Maldon, my favorite flaky sea salt!}.

Herb Butter

Information from:  The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth: the Surprising, Unbiased Truth about What You Should Eat and Why by Jonny Bowden

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One thought on “Butter & Buttercups

  1. Pingback: A Leafy Green Breakfast | Maui Girl Cooks

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