Yield: About 1 1/2 pints of Ghee plus 1/2 pint of crispy bits.
- 2 pounds of good quality butter (use Cultured or European Style if available)
Melt the butter slowly over low heat in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Stir occasionally. When the butter is melted, it will begin to foam near the top.
Continue cooking over low heat. After a couple of minutes, you will begin to hear snapping, popping and crackling. This is the sound of the water separating from the fat and simmering to the top to evaporate away. You need for this to happen. This is what helps make the ghee so shelf-stable.
You will also start to see the milk solids separate out from the fat. Continue cooking over low heat until the crackling sounds cease and the milk solids have mainly sunk to the bottom and taken on a toasty brown color. Another good indicator that your ghee is done is that it will take on a popcorn like aroma. There may still be a thin layer of foam near the top or it may have lost all of its foam. Either way, if the crackling sounds have stopped and the milk solids are golden brown, it is time to remove the ghee or clarified/drawn butter from the heat. Allow it to cool, uncovered for 30 minutes.
While it cools, set up your straining station. Line a fine mesh sieve or colander positioned over a bowl or jar with paper towels, a clean tea towel or extra-fine cheesecloth. After the ghee has cooled, carefully pour it into the straining apparatus. When you are through straining, there should be the toasted milk solids left in the strainer. Scrape these into a separate clean jar to save for spreading on toast or adding to recipes. The toasted milk solids should be stored in the refrigerator in a tightly covered container.
The ghee can be stored at room temperature in a tightly covered jar for up to six months.