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TIP OF THE DAY: Clarified Butter

Melted or “drawn” butter, at top, compared
to clarified butter. Photo by
Emily Chang | THE NIBBLE.

If you like to sauté foods in butter but find that higher heat scorches the butter, use clarified butter instead.

Clarified butter has had the milk solids removed, so that it is clear in its liquid state. You may have had it without knowing it:

In a proper service, the melted butter served with lobster is clarified butter—clear, with no cloudy milk proteins. In the case of lobster, clarified butter is served for aesthetic reasons.

Some restaurants don’t spend the time and money on clarified butter and serve “drawn butter”—melted butter—instead. See the photo comparison.

Clarified butter—called ghee in India—is shelf stable. You can purchase a jar and keep it in the pantry until its needed. It is never used in baking, since the milk solids in regular butter provide a richer flavor to baked goods, and the oven heating dynamic is different so there’s no scorching.

  • See our review of Ancient Organics ghee for a recipe to make ghee (clarified butter) at home.
  • Check out the comparative smoke points of all the cooking fats.

 





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