If you’ve never made ghee before, you’re in for a treat. Watch this video for an introduction.
Ghee, or clarified butter, is an integral part of the dietary aspect of the Ayurvedic tradition. It is recognised that oils are a great necessity for optimum digestion and ghee is the recommended form that we should eat for perfect absorption and improved well-being.
Although ghee is available in health food stores, I would suggest that you cook your own, as you will then know exactly what is in it as well as save quite a bit of money doing it yourself. It’s also fun.
So this is what you’ll need: 3 250g packs of unsalted organic butter and a saucepan big enough to take all 3 fully melted. A clean jar to put the clarified butter in and a large strainer or fine-meshed seive. You will also need a spoon for skimming off the coagulated milk solids during the cooking process as well as a small bowl for putting this in.
Process: place the butter in the saucepan and turn on a low heat. Allow the butter to completely melt. It will slowly start to bubble. As the water in the butter bubbles away, the solids will float to the surface. Gradually skim these off. Keep watching the butter and make sure it does not overheat and get burned.
Once the bubbling is underway, you can turn the heat right down low. You will notice with time that the bubbling reduces as the water gets less and less. Keep skimming off until the butter has a clear golden look to it. Do not let it cook too long, as it can quickly turn brown. When most of the solids have been cooked out and the sound of the bubbling has died down, lift the pan over to the sink (using an oven glove) and stand it for a minute or so in some cold water.
Then lift it out of the water and slowly pour through the strainer into the glass jar. It should be a really clear yellow. Leave to stand. The butter gets lighter as it cools and takes on a gorgeous, rich sunshine colour.
The ghee should solidify but have the consistency of margarine. Any solids that were left in will have sunk to the bottom. If there are any, they can be discarded at the end.
Make sure you always use a clean spoon or knife to remove ghee from the jar. Don’t put the jar in the fridge. It can stand on the counter with a lid on.
Use the ghee in place of any oils for cooking or spread on bread as desired. Enjoy.
I hope to be sharing more Ayurvedic treasures with you very soon. If you have eaten ghee before, I’d love to hear your thoughts on it. Thanks.