Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Smoked Butter

yes it's true! smoking butter at home is quite simple. you need a metal box with large-ish holes punched in it, wood chips, a pot with tight fitting lid, a plate and some butter. I saw this recipe first in the Lark cookbook. (to read the FWDR review on the book click, here.) it instantly got my attention, the chefs at Lark were equally as inspired by the NOMA Cookbook, where they first discovered smoking butter.

smoking butter is such a great and simple idea - we smoke cheese, why not butter? it adds a lovely flavour to country bread and is great tossed with steamed veggies, you can make a killer beurre blanc sauce with it too, as they do in the Lark Cookbook. I used it here with fresh sliced radishes and flaky sea salt.

my attempt at smoking butter was a bit of trial and error. I used fine oak shavings my carpenter friend gave me, the recipe first called for chips. I used a roses tin for the smoke box. which I needed to make the holes a bit bigger. i'd say half a centimetre would have been best.

I cut my butter into long fingers which gives the finished product a bit of an elegant edge. wrapped in parchment and twine its a gift worth sharing!


Smoked Butter

makes 1 pound

adapted from Lark: Cooking Against the Grain, by John Sundstrom

1 pound salted butter, cut lengthways in four pieces
wood chips or shavings

  • chill your butter on a plate for one hour in the freezer
  • place your wood chips into the smoke box, fit on the lid and set over a medium heat.
  • when the chips begin to smoke well place in the bottom of a large pot with a tight fitting lid
  • place the chilled butter on top of the smoke box, then cover for 20 minutes
  • after 20 minutes smell the butter and try a small bit. if its smokey to your liking you're done, otherwise re-chill the butter and smoke once more.
  • store well wrapped in the fridge for about a week.
its best to get a really smokey flavour, when doing my first run I smoked it for twice the time, its great on fresh bread but for cooking i'd give the butter a bit longer in the smoker


  1. Hmmm. I have been thinking about smoking some cheese, but I was wondering how to stop it melting. The stovetop smoker I have gets pretty hot. Presumably using your method the tin in which the wood-chips are brought to a smoulder cools down quite rapidly when you take it off the heat?

    1. this recipe uses the cold smoking technique, so there isn't much heat involved, just smouldering wood and smoke. I smoked the butter for 45 minutes and it just warmed it up a little. freezing it helps too. I've never smoked cheese but imagine this method would work too.

  2. Next time I run the cold smoker - I'm giving this a go!

    1. do! I'm thinking of using it in a caramel sauce.... could be interesting?