Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Making Ghee

Over the past several days I have been playing in the kitchen quite a bit and experimenting. This time around I decided to make my own ghee. Ghee is another word for clarified butter. When it is clarified the butter is cleared of the protein, other wise known as casein. Why would someone do this you ask? Well, for the past 4 years my children and I have been cows milk free due to allergies and sensitivities. It was one of the greatest God led decisions that I ever made. It changed our lives. Homogenized, pasteurized cows milk with S-alpha 1 casein is poison to our bodies. Removing the protein allows us to enjoy the healthy fat in butter without reacting to the casein.

The difficult part is knowing that cows milk is not in and of itself bad. The Lord created cows to give us milk. We were not created with allergies, sensitivities, or intolerances. Unfortunately, we now have animals not eating what they are supposed to eat, not living in conditions that they were meant to live, and being treated with complete and total disrespect. Cows were made to eat grass. Cows were made to roam in the fields. Cows who eat grass and roam in fields with fresh air and sunshine are healthy, happy cows.

This aversion to the S-alpha 1 (S-A1) casein comes from Holstein cows, which are the cows used on most commercial dairy farms. S-A1 casein is very difficult to digest, especially after homogenization and ultra-pasteurization. These high temperatures turn the milk into toxic puss. We need the enzymes and good bacteria in the milk that are naturally there to digest it. What might be interesting for some of you to know is other cows, like the Jersey breed, do not produce S-A1 protein. Holstein cows are a newer breed.

This aversion is what is masked in our culture as lactose intolerance. There is no such thing as lactose intolerance. Babies are born to process lactose with the enzyme lactase. Breast milk has more lactose than cows milk. If we did not process the milk, and drank it raw as intended with the right protein type, we would not have the issues we have today. Need I mention how cows are not supposed to be injected with hormones so we can make them produce more milk than we are supposed to and have them impregnated so much that the poor things can barely stand up?

Healthy happy cows make good milk for us. It's perfect just the way it is and nothing needs to be done to it. When animals eat a proper diet, they stay healthy, and do not need unnecessary medication. (Kind of like us.) The food and environment is their medicine. I digress.

Back to ghee, so the process of clarifying butter is not some new thing. Ghee is used in traditional Indian cooking. It is a healing food. It has even been used in medicinal treatments in Ayurveda.Being 100% fat it aids foods in being digested. Ghee is made best from 100% grass fed cows. Grass fed ghee contains gamma linoleic acid. This healthy fat aids in boosting the immune system.Ghee also has a burning point of about 482 degrees F; that is spectacular for cooking and baking!

So here is the process of making ghee:

First I took two 8oz blocks of Kerry Gold Irish Butter and put them into my cast iron skillet. I used Kerry Gold because it is from 100% grass fed cows without hormones from milk that only been pasteurized. Ultra pasteurization and homogenization does not take place.Their website also states that if a cow should become ill that antibiotics are used, however that cow is supposed to become segregated from the rest of the cows and her milk is discarded until she recovers. The milk is said to be constantly tested to be sure it is free of the antibiotics. The website doesn't state what kind of cows are used on their dairy pastures. I did email and ask. I am still awaiting a response.

Next I melted them completely.

See the white stuff...that's the casein. Let that rise to the top.

I skimmed all of the casein off of the butter oil.

Discard the casein. You can use it for something else, but I can't eat it, so bye bye casein it went.

Some casein will stick to the bottom and brown,; that is normal, but don't burn it.

Using a stainless steel mesh strainer filter the butter oil (ghee) into a glass jar.

 So here is the finished product! I really like it. The kids and I have enjoyed using our own homemade ghee. You can leave it in a liquid oil state on the counter for about 3 months or you can do what we did and put in the fridge to use solid like butter. Have you ever made ghee? Do you add any herbs or spices? The sky is really the limit. You could even let it cool on the counter and add then raw honey and cinnamon...oh yum! Remember to be blessed, be healthy, and be a good steward!

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