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How To Soften Butter

How To Soften Butter

Steven Pennington
Tips professional chefs use to soft butter
5 from 1 vote

Ingredients
 

  • 1 stick Butter 4oz of Butter

Instructions
 

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO SOFTEN BUTTER

  • A cold stick of butter straight from the refrigerator is about 40ºF (4.4 ºC) and firm in texture. The softening time depends on where you chose to place your pastry dish or pot but will be approximately 1-2 hours at room temperature to soften the butter.

HOW TO QUICKLY SOFTEN BUTTER

  • Cut butter into cubes with a sharp knife to cut down the time spent softening the butter, making it easier to work with when mixing doughs and batters. For faster results, cut butter into ½-inch pieces or smaller if desired. This method increases the temperature of butter by about 5 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit, so let it sit on the counter.
    Do not microwave butter when baking, as it changes butter's molecular structure and leads to poor baking results.

MICROWAVE METHODS

  • It is possible to soften butter in the microwave, but it's a little tricky. The key is using medium power and flipping your stick every five seconds so that even heat distribution can be achieved with this method. It will take about thirty-five seconds.

MICROWAVE STEAMING

  • Put your stick of butter in a microwave-safe bowl or cup and place in the microwave. Heat on high for five seconds and test softness by pressing on the butter with your finger. If it's soft, you're done; if not, continue microwaving and checking softness every 5-10 second intervals until soft.

MICROWAVE WATER BATH

  • This is a quick and easy technique that doesn't require very much work. Simply microwave some water to create warm conditions in which you can then place your butter in a protective bag in the warm water for 5 to 10 minutes.

GRATING THE BUTTER

  • One of the easiest ways to soften butter is by using a cheese grater. All that needs to be done is to place the stick of butter on top of the grater on the widest pore size setting. Just make sure that no other ingredients get mixed into the butter while doing this.

CREAM THE BUTTER USING A STAND MIXER

  • Using an electric mixer creates friction from the fast-moving whipping attachment. Help the mixer by cutting the butter into smaller pieces.
    Allow the mixer to run until you see the change in the texture of the butter. This speeds up the process. Once the butter has begun to soften after whipping, let the butter sit in the mixer for another 5 to 10 minutes. Good time to measure out the other ingredients in your recipe.
    Filling the stand mixer with hot water before mixing will speed up results. Then pour the hot water out before mixing. If you have very hot water reduce the water temperature.

POUNDING OUT THE BUTTER

  • Place a stick of butter between plastic or wax paper and pound it with a rolling pin. Pound the whole thing flat with a rolling pin until it has softened to your desired consistency.

Notes

If you would like to try making your own homemade butter be sure to visit our post.

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Keyword How To Soften Butter
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