Ghee is Clarified butter.
It is used extensively in India and other South Asian cuisines and also in Hindu religious rituals. It is made by simmering unsalted butter, until the moisture has evaporated and all the milk solids separate and deposit at the bottom. The scum floats on the top and the butter turns clear to a shade of light golden yellow.
Clarified butter has a lot of benefits over traditional butter. It has high smoking point, so it does not burn while cooking. Also while clarifying the butter the solid milk proteins are removed. As a result it becomes lactose free – a more tolerable product for lactose intolerant people.
Ghee, in South Asian countries is usually made from cow’s milk. The ghee of the clarified butter is similar to the French beurre noisette/browned butter, except the settled milk solids in Ghee are not allowed to brown as much as the browned butter. Ghee has a lovely rich and nutty flavor, and enhances the flavor and taste of anything that it is added to.
- 4 sticks of unsalted Butter
- 1 very large deep heavy bottomed pot
Heat the unsalted butter in low flame. It will slowly melt and start bubbling and boiling. If you are making this is a deep pot you will not need to worry about spilling over.
The process might take up to an hour. Gradually you will see the scum/foam rising to the top, and the milk solids depositing at the bottom of the pan and the butter getting transparent. Lower the heat and keep on simmering.
Be careful not to burn the solids at the bottom of the pot. They should remain at a deep yellow color with tinges of brown in them.
The foam at the top will slowly clear up and get deposited at the bottom.
You will know if its done once the liquid is transparent light golden color. The deposit should be deep yellow and not brown. Do not stir. Strain the clarified butter through a fine strainer, and discard the solid deposit.
Note: Ghee at room temperature looks semi-solid. Ghee does not need to be refrigerated, but there is no harm if you store it in the refrigerator. Always use a clean spoon to scoop out ghee for use.