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Butter too hard, Butter too soft

Posted by IngridO 
Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 13, 2017 09:45PM
I love butter as a spread but find if I put it in the fridge its too hard (I don't have a butter conditioner) or if I leave it out, its too soft.

I store my butter in a glass butter dish

Does anyone use an alternative container to store their butter in the fridge? or outside the fridge?
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 14, 2017 02:42AM
I sympathise ingrid. Every morning I try to remind myself to take the butter out of the fridge, alas... the fridges now don't seem to come with a butter conditioner as they make the butter go rancid over time. I saw somewhere that a 'butter bell' made from pottery would keep the butter spreadable. I am a bit resistant to add another gadget to my kitchen though. I like my butter spreadable but on the firm side.
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 14, 2017 09:10AM
As far as I'm aware, the reason they took butter conditioners out of fridges is this:
Where have all the Butter Conditioners gone? Have you noticed that fridges don’t come with butter conditioners any more? No it wasn’t a margarine conspiracy, the manufacturers had to remove them to meet strict government minimum performance standards. Butter conditioners wasted too much energy – when you think about it, they were a mini-heater in your fridge!

Fleur said on here 10 years ago: We used to keep the butter in the hot water cupboard before we had fridges with butter conditioners......and in the summer we used to keep it cool by placing it on a brick in the concrete wash tubs (in the "wash house" ) with a little water in the bottom of the tub for the brick to sit in...kept it cool and hard....amazing how we managed without those mod cons back in the late 50's

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/14/2017 09:10AM by J1.
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 14, 2017 09:19AM
I've used a butter bell, and they work very well, especially if kept in a cooler pantry rather than on the bench. However, like anything else you need to remember to clean and fill it. That's where I fall down. The Butter Bell brand model is fine, but quite small (115g), if you're looking for a slightly larger capacity, order a Le Creuset version (170g).

Currently I slice off about 50g at a time and it goes in a small dish in the pantry. That seems to last about a day or so without going yuck.
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 14, 2017 10:01PM
I found a US-made butter crock that looks a more logical shape than the round ones and is attractive at the same time, but I went through hoops trying to purchase one. I tried their online ordering but discovered they don't ship to NZ, so I opened a NZ Post YouShop account where you can buy anything overseas and have it posted through this programme, but it required me to also open PayPal account. Anyway, I did all that but still struck problems when trying to enter the complicated address the YouShop account gave me. It wouldn't work on the US website for some reason, and anyway, by the time the exchange rate had been applied, then the YouShop fee and the PayPal fee, it would have been over $NZ100 and while I loved the look of the dish, it certainly didn't warrant me spending that much, so I gave up. It's also on eBay but with the notation 'does not ship to NZ' so you'd have the same problems I encountered unless you have a friend in the US who can buy on your behalf and post it to you. Unfortunately I haven't got a friend in the US that I can get to do it for me. It
would cut the cost considerably.

Here's the website if anyone is interested in having a look. It's an interesting site and the colours of the crock are lovely. []
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 15, 2017 02:06PM
I must admit I buy spreadable butter (the kind without additives) to get around this problem.

Lorna, if you're interested in an alternative to YouShop, I've often used Box Voyage ( I've found them cheaper than YouShop in the past and they're very pleasant to deal with. They tell you what the postage via different kinds of service (mail, courier etc) will be and you pick the one you want. They also have an extra service (for extra cost) that if a website won't take a NZ credit card they can buy the thing for you as well as post it on. All of it costs, of course, but I find it's worth it when there's something I really want and can't get any other way.
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 15, 2017 10:42PM
Thank you, Carolyn, I'll have a look at that site. I think my problem was the form on the Butterbay website didn't conform with the requirements of YouShop. No matter how I tried to fill in the Butterbay website I kept getting an error message telling me the address was incorrect. I contacted YouShop and all they did was redirect me to their 'Help' page which was no help at all. And of course, Butterbay were not really interested in changing their form to comply with a NZ shipping company (or whatever YouShop is). I hit a brick wall so gave up.
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 16, 2017 09:38AM
Lorna - you can buy the Butter Bay boat from Amazon and they'll send it here. US$29 for the boat, US$9 for the postage, all in all quite reasonable.

Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 16, 2017 10:31AM
Thanks folks - I was wondering why my 2 year old fridge didn't have a butter conditioner, when we bought the fridge it never occurred to me to ask. I'm the only one who likes butter in the family and usually I just hack off bits of hard butter to spread on my Burgen or Vogels toast or I smear a sloppy load of oversoft butter dependant on where I left the butter the night before.

I'm definately keen to give the Butter Bay boat a go
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 16, 2017 10:45PM
If you're using butter just for toast, what you can do with hard butter is use your lemon zester to create thin curly strips - lay them all over your toast while it's still warm and you'll then be able to spread them around. You can use your grater too, but that's a bit messier...
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 16, 2017 11:17PM
Buy spreadable butter? Keep it in the fridge, its always soft and ready to go.

I have no idea what makes it that consistency but it still seems to have that butter taste.
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 17, 2017 03:50AM
I've never found spreadable butter spreadable, although it's a long time since I last bought one so maybe they've improved. Are they definitely spreadable these days (e.g. on sandwich thin sliced fresh bread from supermarket)?
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 17, 2017 08:29AM
Vanessa Canola Oil.I don't like it as much as real butter.
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 19, 2017 10:11PM
I bought this Nigella Lawson Butter Dish via Amazon back in 2013 and find it perfect for our rectangular blocks and I like the ceramic dish and wooden lid. However I now see they now say it is unavailable, and Mighty Ape and Fishpond for NZ display the same results. Stevens have a similar ceramic product and stock is available online for only $25 []
Our butter is always stored in this dish in the pantry, and the dish is washed before I put a new block in
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 20, 2017 08:54PM
Like Irene I too have the Nigella one..on your advice Irene, when I could not find one because way back then they were said to be
unavailable.. I used the site you advised...I think it may have been Amazon...I purchased I am ready for the inevitable!!! I would hate to be without it..always spreadable and over the years the butter has NEVER gone rancid and is never kept in the Thank you Irene for our help...way back then!...Jan
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 20, 2017 10:02PM
Hi there Jan. Lovely to hear from you and that you did get the Nigella Butter Keeper. You were actually very wise to get two - I only have the one, and not too sure what I will do, if it makes its way to the Great Butter Keeper in the Sky sad smiley
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 20, 2017 10:43PM
I gave one as a present once but sadly didn't get one for me as well. Good to hear how well they perform. We have a glass one which has to go in the fridge in summer and becomes hazardously slippery to pick up.
Re: Butter too hard, Butter too soft
March 20, 2017 11:47PM
hopefully now that butter is increasing in popularity over margarines, fridge manufacturers will bring back butter conditioners.....
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