Is there a more pleasing subject than butter? It certainly has been around for thousands of years, and was popular in ancient Greece and Rome, but oddly, it was used there as a remedy for healing wounds.
By the Middle ages it was popular throughout Europe as a food.
There is a handful of different types of butter, but the two that most concern us are sweet cream butter that is popular in the United States and cultured butter that is found in Europe (also known as European butter).
In the U.S. we have three grades of butter, Grade AA, A and B, with AA being the best.
You might be interested to know that 10 grams of butter has 72 calories, margarine has the same, 72 calories and olive oil has 88. Who would have guessed?
One of the most interesting things that can be done with butter is to flavor it, something called compound butters, and there are plenty of them: almond, anchovy, caviar, crayfish, Roquefort and watercress, which are but a few that Larousse Gastronomique lists. Beurre Maitre d'Hotel is one of the best, try it on grilled meats.
BEURRE MAITRE D’HOTEL
1/2 cup softened butter
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon chopped parsley
1 pinch cayenne
Salt and fresh ground black pepper
Combine the ingredients with the softened butter. Classically, if is formed into a roll and served by the slice, but you can serve it any way you like.