Brown butter is my go-to trick for adding nutty flavor and depth to everything from moist and flaky fillets of fish to carrot cupcakes, but my first go-around with this classic technique was, admittedly, a bit intimidating. Feeling just as daunted? Don't worry: it's simple, as long as you follow a few key steps, and entirely worth the effort.
Ireland is known for much more than Guinness beer and Jameson. The country is also home to one of the butters most cherished by home and professional cooks alike: Kerrygold. So what makes Kerrygold butter so special?
Let's begin with its appearance: compare Kerrygold (pictured at top) to conventional American butter (shown below). Kerrygold has a deep straw color, rather than the pale, chalky color of standard butter. And no, Kerrygold butter isn't dyed with artificial colors to amp up its golden hue; the dairy cows graze on Ireland's emerald-green grass 10 months out of the year, and the beta-carotene in the fresh grass contributes to the rich color. (In contrast, most conventional dairy cows in America don't have the luxury of grazing freely on green pastures and are fed a diet that consists of corn and soybeans.)
In my opinion, even the greatest beurre Français doesn't hold a candle to Kerrygold in flavor. I'll never forget my first experience eating it: I melted a tablespoon on a hot piece of toast and took a bite. It was the best butter I had ever experienced. I quickly and unapologetically slathered another tablespoon on my toast until it became saturated in the unctuous fat. Creamy and sweet with a pure butter flavor, Kerrygold is so fresh-tasting, it will make you think a farmer has just hand-churned the butter for you that day.
Such a luxurious butter must have an outrageous price tag to match, right? Wrong! At my local Whole Foods, the butter is usually on sale at two for $5. (It should be noted that each Kerrygold stick is the equivalent of two standard American sticks of butter.) It's even available at Trader Joe's. Test Kerrygold butter for yourself and prepare to fall into a passionate butter love affair.
Here are a few recipes I've used Kerrygold butter in:
Are you a Kerrygold fan, too?
The first week in October brings a handful of exciting movies to the theater. Liam Neeson is returning as a badass dad in Taken 2, Nicole Kidman and Matthew McConaughey star in the controversial drama The Paperboy, and Jennifer Garner is carving up a storm in Butter. Meanwhile, Leighton Meester starts an affair with Hugh Laurie in The Oranges, and Tim Burton's latest, Frankenweenie, brings a dog back from the grave. Flip through all the pictures to see this week's upcoming films!
Here's something I didn't think I'd ever say: I wish Jennifer Garner's new movie had a bigger emphasis on butter carving. The hook to her satiric comedy, adequately titled Butter, is that the story focuses on the world of competitive butter sculpting. (This is a real thing.) It's a realm that hasn't been explored much on the big screen (if at all), but unfortunately, the carving competitions are just the background for a lackluster story.
Garner plays Laura Pickler, the intensely type-A wife (think Election's Tracy Flick, all grown up) of reigning butter sculpture champ Bob (Ty Burrell). Laura relishes the attention she receives from being his better half, and when Bob drops out of the upcoming competition, she takes it upon herself to learn the ropes of the biz and continue the Pickler legacy. Enter Brooke (Olivia Wilde), a bicycle-riding prostitute who decides to compete against Laura after Bob fails to pay her for a romp in his van. As if that's not enough, Laura has to worry about taking down Destiny (Yara Shahidi), a talented foster kid poised to become the next butter-carving prodigy. It's a lot of pressure for one lady to deal with, but Garner's aggressive portrayal of Laura won't have you aching with sympathy for the woman. To find out what else I thought about Butter, read more.
Jennifer Garner made a red-carpet appearance with the cast of Butter at the NYC premiere last night. She chose a strapless Gucci gown for the occasion, which came after attending a press conference earlier in the day. Jennifer had Ashley Greene; Olivia Wilde, in Alexander McQueen; and Ty Burrell by her side for both events. Costar Alicia Silverstone missed out on this afternoon's promotional stop but joined them for this evening's screening and later at the afterparty sponsored by Appleton Estate Rum. Jennifer, Alicia, and Olivia mingled with Harvey Weinstein at Double Seven, where they celebrated their premiere.
While Jennifer is working in NYC, her husband, Ben Affleck, is on the West Coast. He attended a charity dinner on Monday night and was spotted grabbing lunch on his motorcycle yesterday.
The ladies of Butter were in town last night for the movie's NYC premiere looking superpolished in an array of gorgeous Fall-ready dresses. Ashley went for a monochrome look in a pretty pale pink Donna Karan wrap dress and suede Casadei heels, while Olivia showed off a strong-shouldered modern white sheath dress by Alexander McQueen paired with gold metallic pumps and a matching clutch. Always a stunner on the red carpet, Jennifer Garner showed off her A-list style in a ravishing red Gucci gown paired with a beautiful Pomellato gold-and-diamond chain-link bracelet, while Alicia stayed sweet in a silk scalloped dress and black satin pumps. Which leading lady gets your best-dressed style vote?
Jennifer Garner met up with her Butter costars Ashley Greene, Ty Burrell, Yara Shahidi, and Olivia Wilde for a press conference at the Crosby Street Hotel in NYC today. Jennifer arrived on the East Coast yesterday, after traveling from LA solo. She already started promoting the project with a pretaped appearance on Ellen that airs today, during which she joked about husband Ben Affleck's "wonder sperm." Ty switched gears to the big-screen effort following an exciting weekend spent celebrating his TV hit, Modern Family. The show picked up outstanding comedy series just days ahead of its fourth season premiere last night. Ashley, meanwhile, has been in the Big Apple working on multiple projects, including a photo shoot for Mark cosmetics earlier this month. She and the rest of the cast have a week to go until Butter hits theaters on Oct. 5.
In the trailer for Butter, Jennifer Garner tackles the high-stakes world of competitive butter sculpting as Laura Pickler, an intense woman whose career in butter carving is just a front for her political ambitions. Laura's plan gets a few wrenches thrown into it when she discovers her picture-perfect husband and fellow carver (Ty Burrell) is cheating on her with a stripper (Olivia Wilde) and she has to face a new competitor in the form of a young butter-whittling prodigy, played by little Yara Shahidi.
Butter carving (or really any type of perishable-item sculpting) isn't a hobby I'm familiar with, but it seems like the movie is more of a character study than a feature on margarine expositions anyway. Jennifer Garner has played the anxious domestic goddess before (see Juno), but here she's got a little more of an edge. Rob Corddry is also one of my favorite comic actors and he had me laughing out loud in the trailer, despite the fact that his character is probably the most "normal" guy in the movie. Butter opens on Sept. 4, but you can check out the trailer after the jump.
When cooking with butter straight from the fridge, it has a higher chance of burning, because the butter contains milk solids that lower its smoke point. One simple way to prevent a burnt, oily mess? Remove the milk solids and create clarified butter; in just 10 to 20 minutes, you'll be able to add a dab of the warm-flavored cooking oil to everything from pancakes and grilled cheese to eggs and sautéed meat. Take a look at our method of clarifying butter, in pictures.
A pregnant Jennifer Garner was glowing at a screening of her new film Butter on Sunday in LA, where she told us that daughters Violet and Seraphina haven't seen her in action since they still get scared when watching Disney movies. Jen also revealed she'd like to guest star on Modern Family. Hear what she had to say in today's PopSugar Rush!