Cultured buttermilk, often known simply as "buttermilk", was first commercially introduced in the United States in the 1920s. It was popular among immigrants, and viewed as a food that could slow aging. Up until the 1960’s, buttermilk was a popular addition to any kitchen. Sadly, yoghurt quickly become the consumer favourite fermented milk product, and slowly cultured buttermilk fell into decline around the world.
Cultured buttermilk is a a tangy-flavoured thick milk product that can be enjoyed raw or used for baking. Lactococcus lactis and Lactobacillus bulgaricus are the bacteria responsible for fermenting milk into buttermilk. Cultured buttermilk is fermented at room temperate meaning no additional equipment is needed to create it. It is a fermented alternative to regular milk.
Cultured Buttermilk is often used in baking because of its special properties. Many people use buttermilk in baking as it brings a pleasant tang to cakes, bread, biscuits, pancakes, or dressings. Because this rich-tasting milk is an acidic ingredient, like yoghurt and sour cream, it also gives baked goods a softer texture and more body, and it helps quick bread rise.
Please note: Cooking with high temperatures will kill the bacteria in buttermilk.
To activate your buttermilk, boil 150ml of whole pasteurised milk and allow it to cool back to room temperature. Place the dried buttermilk into the milk and leave it for 24-48hours until you notice that the milk has set. Then remove two tablespoons from the mixture to add to the next batch and follow the instructions below. We recommend you discard the remainder of the buttermilk after removing the two tablespoons as it likely to have slightly spoiled.
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