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Divas: Upgrade your butter with six easy recipes

Is there a way to make butter even better? Of course! And I’m gonna tell you all about it.

Compound butter is just butter with panache. So easy to make, it’s softened butter mixed with your favorite sweet or savory flavors and refrigerated. To serve, you put a pat of butter on hot foods to melt and make a rich, flavorful sauce. Think grilled meat, chicken or fish, hot veggies, pancakes, toast … you get the idea. Are you with me?

Here’s How – Place room temperature butter in a mixing bowl or bowl of a small food processor. Add your goodies and blend. Make the now fantastic butter into a log – directions below. Place your divine creation in the fridge until solid. To serve, slice into rounds and place atop something deserving of such magnificence. Am I being overly-dramatic? You won’t think so when you try my pairing suggestions below.

How to roll – spoon your blob of butter in the middle of a sheet of wax paper. Fold the paper over the blob. Use the edge of something flat to press the butter into the folded edge of the paper to form a cylinder or log shape. I use the side of a small baking sheet or a pastry scraper. Twist the ends of the paper like a piece of wrapped candy.

How to store – label and date your butter and store it in the fridge for up to three weeks or freeze for three months.

The simplest compound butters can be mixed with honey, jam, herbs, spices, or garlic. But let’s go a little Diva on some butter, shall we?

BLEU CHEESE AND GARLIC – 6 tablespoons butter, ¼ cup bleu cheese crumbles, 1 tablespoon minced purple onion, 1 teaspoon minced garlic, 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce. Divine on grilled steak or baked potatoes.

AVOCADO LIME – ½ cup butter, flesh from one large avocado, 1 teaspoon cumin, zest and juice from one lime, ¼ teaspoon salt. Use on salmon, shrimp or other fish, chicken, corn on the cob.

MEDITERRANEAN BUTTER – ½ cup butter, ¼ cup shredded parmesan, 2 teaspoons fresh basil, 1 teaspoon minced garlic, ¼ cup roast red pepper, 1 tablespoon chopped olives, one pinch red pepper flakes. Divine on hot pasta or baguette.

CHILI LIME HONEY BUTTER – ½ cup butter, juice and zest of half a lime, 1 ½ tablespoon honey, 1 teaspoon chili powder, ¼ teaspoon salt, dash cayenne pepper. Slather this on grilled corn, pork, anything BBQ.

FRESH BERRY HONEY BUTTER – ½ cup butter, ½ cup room temperature mashed fresh berries, 1 tablespoon honey. Use on biscuits, cornbread, toast, pancakes.

BANANAS FOSTER – ½ cup butter, ½ mashed banana, 2 tablespoons caramel sauce, 1 tablespoon brown sugar, dash each cinnamon and nutmeg. Slather on pancakes, waffles, French toast, or your arm.

Does this mean you could get away with giving butter as a gift? Yes! Wrap up some lovely pasta or a loaf of bread with any butter you imagine.

Now, the sky is the limit with zillions of combinations yet to be made. Mix, chill and enjoy!

Fabulous Food contributed by Patti Diamond from Divas On A Dime – Where Frugal, Meets Fabulous! www.divasonadime.com

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