N othing goes better with fresh baked bread than generous lashings of butter. When that butter hits the warm bread and melts is a sight to behold, making mouths water all around the table. So what exactly is compound butter? It is softened butter, mixed with various sweet or savoury ingredients. While the concept is simple, the potential flavor combinations are endless. Pair scones, rolls, pancakes, waffles or fresh bread with butters flavored with orange or lemon zest, maple syrup, honey, cinnamon or garlic. Pair your meat, vegetables, fish and bread with butters mixed with herbs, spices, cheese or citrus zest. Here are some of my favourite compound butter recipes; I have a roll of the first one in the fridge right now! Method
Start with unsalted butter so that you’re able to control the amount of salt when you add the seasonings. This is particularly important with sweet compound butters. To achieve the fluffiest butter, you can whip it with a hand mixer, but I prefer to use a bowl and a fork to blend in the ingredients. Once you’ve combined everything, spoon your butter onto a sheet of plastic wrap and shape into a log, then store in the fridge or freezer. Cayenne Pepper Butter
I ove, love, love spicy food, so of course I had to find a way to incorporate a little heat into my butter. Combine half a cup unsalted butter, one tablespoon minced fresh rosemary, one teaspoon cayenne pepper and half a teaspoon salt. Dollop on top of cooked steak, chicken or fish, sauté shrimp in the butter, serve with grilled corn on the cob at your next braai or brush melted on grilled vegetables. Cinnamon Maple Butter
This butter makes a delicious addition to pancakes and French toast. Combine half a cup unsalted butter, one tablespoon maple syrup and threequarters of a teaspoon ground cinnamon. You can also spread this on your toast. Garlic and Herb Butter
Perfect for spreading on fresh baked bread, this is my go-to compound butter for most recipes because it makes a great flavour base for almost any type of meal. Combine half a cup unsalted butter, two tablespoons chopped fresh herbs such as parsley, thyme, rosemary and oregano, half a teaspoon salt, one minced garlic clove and half a teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper. Serve with dinner rolls, dollop on top of chicken or steak, serve with steamed, roasted or grilled vegetables or use to fry eggs and stir fry’s.