If you’re not a fan of overly sweet cranberry sauce on your poultry at Christmas, but still love all the traditional flavour companions like cranberries, oranges and herbs, then this Christmas Butter is for you!
I know what you might be thinking, “what on earth is Christmas Butter?”. Way before our family ever started eating a ketogenic diet, I’ve always made, and been obsessed with, compound butters. Compound butter is basically just butter, with added flavours mixed through it. You can make it savoury or sweet.
Anyway, my husband decided to cook a Jamie Oliver turkey recipe for my Girls Christmas dinner last week, and the recipe called for butter mixed with dried cranberries and herbs, which then gets stuffed under the skin and rubbed over the turkey.
I decided to instead make a big batch of my own mixture (similar to Jamie’s but with some additions), to create a festive flavoursome butter that I could also give to friends as a gift, and use myself over the holidays. Hence the name, Christmas Butter.
Homemade Christmas Butter
A subtle and delicate butter with flavours that won’t overpower the meat, yet are perfectly seasoned with Christmas aromatics. A little slice of Christmas Butter on top of your cooked turkey or under the turkey breast before cooking.
- Food processor or electric mixer
- Sharp knife
- Large bowl
- Baking paper
- 500 g quality unsalted butter
- 200 g dried cranberries, finely chopped
- 1 bunch fresh thyme (30-40g)
- zest of 2 large oranges
- 1 tbsp chives, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp parsley, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp rosemary, finely chopped
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp white pepper
- 2 finely chopped dehydrated oranges
Bring your butter to room temperature.
Finely chop your dried cranberries, thyme, parsley and chives, then place in a mixing bowl with the room temperature butter and orange zest. Give your mixture a good stir on low speed with hand beaters or kitchen mixer until just incorporated.
Cut 4 rectangular sheets of baking paper approx 20 x 30cm and place an equal amount of the mixture in the centre of each sheet, and then shape (with clean hands) into a rough log shape. This will make it much easier to roll up
Fold over one side of the baking paper so it’s taught over the butter, and give the roll some gentle compression and pull back slightly. What you’re trying to do is gently lengthen and compress the mixture into a nice log shape
Open up the baking sheet and gently roll the log of butter to one side, then roll it up and twist the ends firmly to seal. Tie each end with some twine or ribbon.
Place in the fridge for 1-2 hours to set, then you can slice it up as needed. The butter should keep for about 2 weeks in the fridge, but can also be frozen to use later.
I’m telling you, this Christmas Butter is a game changer. It’s subtle, delicate flavours won’t overpower the meat, and yet adds the perfect hit of flavour and aromatics. A little slice of Christmas Butter on top of your cooked turkey when served is SO, so delicious!!!!
For years I’ve been making a savory compound butter, Anchovy Butter. I constantly have some sitting in my fridge because I cannot eat red meat without it! There are so many compound butters you can make and they really elevate even the most simple of dishes, so I hope this inspires you to make some of your own as they truly are so simple and easy to make.
I bought all the ingredients for this Christmas Butter (and my Homemade Stovetop Christmas Potpourri at Harris Farm in Bowral . This isn’t a sponsored post either. It’s just where I always shop when I’m entertaining as their produce is the best .You can see how I dehydrated oranges here for a Homemade Stovetop Christmas Potpourri.
These little Christmas Butters make such a lovely homemade gift at this time of year. People will really appreciate the effort and they look so sweet and festive sliced up too.
You can use your Christmas Butter under the skin of any poultry, or rubbed over the outside, before it goes into the oven. I also like a slice placed on top of hot turkey or chicken so it melts, and you get all the lovely buttery orange, cranberry and thyme flavours. It truly is delicious and with just a hint of sweetness.
I hope you enjoy and would love to know if you make this or have made any compound butters before? If you make this, I’d love you to tag me on Instagram so I can see.