One of the great things about the internet is the open exchange of ideas. There is always the possibility of making a new discovery or finding an inspiration when you open a new web page. You never know where it will happen, although you know the possibility is always there.
Last week Michael Laiskonis blogged about brown butter. This led to a discussion in the comments about the best way to extract the most milk solids from dairy and how to get the best yield of brown butter solids to play with. The discussion culminated with a comment by Cory Barrett, the pastry chef at Lola Bistro. He said:
So the idea of browning the powdered butterfat interested me. We’ve been tossing around a carrot cake dessert here at lola and wanted some type of brown butter element on the dish. So we thought why not just add non fat dry milk powder to the butter as we brown it. One pound butter + about a 1/4 of a cup (sorry didn't take the weight down). Browned the butter a little slower than usual, but the results are great. All the powdered browned and was easy to strain out or leave in. Thanks for the inspiration.
Simply brilliant. We tried it and the results are pictured above. Thanks to Michael and Cory, we now have access to a new approach which yields an bounty of brown butter solids which can be integrated into innumerable dishes.
For our brown butter solids we melted 225g of whole butter and added 100g of non-fat milk powder. We followed Cory's slow browning approach to really develop the nutty flavors. To further increase the brown butter flavor we actually poured the fat back over the solids and let them marinate overnight. (This too is Cory's idea, he was kind enough to share the improvement when I spoke with him earlier yesterday to thank him for the inspiration.)
Tomorrow we play.