October 13, 2010
A world without butter is, to me, a very sad place. In the list of foods I can’t live without, it ranks very high. I like it sweet and cold, and I have a very hard time understanding how anyone could possibly want it warm and salted.
My basic butter choices are Plugra and Land o’ Lakes. (Although I’ve been unhappy with Land o’ Lakes since they stopped wrapping their butter in foil; sweet butter is fragile, and foil provides the best barrier to the off-flavors it so easily absorbs.) But the store had sold out of both, so I decided to buy three other brands, from three countries, and have a butter taste-off.
Celles sur Belle, a French butter from Charentes-Poitou was the most expensive of the lot. Creamy and delicious, it was the most neutral. However, given its price, I wouldn’t buy it again.
Jana Valley from the Czech Republic was the least expensive of the butters, a little more than half the price of the French butter, and definitely one I would buy again. Of the three butters, it had the purest cream flavor.
Kate’s Homemade Butter from Maine was the big surprise to me. It was the median-priced butter, with a clean, sweet flavor. This is the one I want on my morning bread.
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