What Is the Purpose of a Butter Crock?
A Butter crock is a way to store butter at room temperature while extending the shelf life as long as possible. Butter crocks are commonly made of ceramic and used to keep butter fresh. While crocs can be placed in a fridge when traveling, butter crocs are intended for counter storage at room temperature. Using the correct type of butter is essential when using a butter croc. I cover choosing butter and more in-depth food safety tips in my article Can Butter Be Stored at Room Temperature? If you don’t already have a butter crock, they’re available on amazon.
Start With a Clean, Dry Butter Crock
One of the most critical factors about using a butter crock is to clean and dry it thoroughly. It’s essential to do so before the first use and every time you refill with butter. A clean croc removes the residue of older butter that can cause bacteria growth and early spoiling of new butter. A dry croc will also help prevent the butter from falling out of the bell when upside down in the base during storage. It will be difficult to salvage the butter once it has fallen out and covered in water.
Fill a Bitter Crock With Warm Butter
When filling a butter crock with fresh butter, it is much easier to work with warm butter rather than directly from the fridge. You don’t want any air bubbles in the butter, especially at the bottom of the bell (if you consider the handle of the bell the base.) If there is an air bubble, the butter may slip out of the bell when inverted. Working with warm butter is not only easier to fill the bell but reduces air bubbles.
Place unwrapped butter on a plate or small bowl for an hour or two until you can spread the butter with the back of a spoon. Avoid being tempted to melt butter in a microwave, and pour the butter into the bell! Microwaving butter too long can cause the layers of fat to separate while hardening, which is not something you’d want to eat.
Spread the Butter Into the Bell With the Back of a Spoon
Once the butter is spreadable using the back of a spoon, begin transferring the butter to the bell of the butter crock. Place the butter on the back of the spoon, not the inside of the scoop! Using the back helps to avoid needing to scrape the spoon’s inside and press the butter fully against the sides of the bell. When the butter comes entirely in contact with the bell, it reduces air bubbles and the risk of the butter falling into the water.
Continue transferring to the butter crock, pressing down the layers as your spread with the spoon back. I fill until there is at least an inch left of the inside of the bell visible. Leaving a gap helps reduce the chance of the bread touching the water and spoiling more quickly.
Fill the Base With a Thin Layer of Chilled Water
After transferring the butter to the inside of the bell, set the lid aside. Fill the base with about a quarter-inch of chilled filtered water. The edge of the bell should be wet, but not the butter. The purpose of the water is to create a seal with the water. It creates an air bubble inside the bell, just like placing a drinking glass or bowl upside down into a layer of water. The airgap displaces the water creating an air-tight seal. That is the advantage of a butter crock, allowing you to store butter fresher and more extended.
Butter Crock Tips
- Keep your butter crock away from heat sources, such as near a stove, and warm sunny areas
- Changing the water in the base daily can help extend the butter’s life.
- Only use salted butter! While the fat content of butter creates an environment that is difficult for bacteria to grow, salted butter adds extra protection.
- If you find that you can’t use the amount of butter in your bell quick enough, fill it with less butter next time. There is no minimum amount of butter needed to create the water displacement.
This article contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I may earn a small commission by purchasing items linked to Amazon. There is no added expense for you, and it will help support Flavors of Paradis LLC. All products recommended are hand selected by Flavors of Paradis unless otherwise stated as a sponsored product.