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Is beurre noisette (brown butter) shelf stable or does it need to be refrigerated.

asked by Bill F almost 2 years ago
9 answers 1797 views
Waffle3
added almost 2 years ago


Depends upon how you define "shelf stable". It is certainly no less so than the stick of butter from which it was made which, due to its relatively high saturation, can withstand some amount of time without refrigeration. The browning process drives off water and creates antioxidants which help to further stabilize it. Ghee, essentially brown butter without the brown bits, can sit around at elevated temperatures for months but eventually reaches a degree of oxidization we refer to as rancid. How much trouble the brown bits would cause, I'm not really sure.

Default-small
added almost 2 years ago

I ran it through a chinois so most of the brown bits are gone. Thanks

Wholefoods_user_icon
added almost 2 years ago

The browned milk solids are proteins, and as such, will spoil faster than the relatively saturated butterfat. They are also a breeding ground for bacteria, if your kitchen hygiene is less than impeccable.

Waffle3
added almost 2 years ago


I'm having trouble accepting the browned bits being a safety issue. Seems to me they're sterile to begin with (having been heated to over 250F) and immersed in a perfectly dry, oxygen-free environment. Compare to, say, a cookie.

Wholefoods_user_icon
added almost 2 years ago

In that case, what you have is ghee, which is room-temperature stable for up to about six months, or refrigerator-stable for a year or more.

Junechamp
ChefJune

June is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added almost 2 years ago

never heard of browned butter called Ghee. Ghee is definitely clarified butter, but browned???

Waffle3
added almost 2 years ago


Yes, ghee is, by definition, browned and clarified. The browning step is partly to help preserve it by creating antioxidants, partly for flavor (although most of the browned flavor stays with the browned bits).

Chris_in_oslo
Greenstuff

Chris is a trusted source on General Cooking

added almost 2 years ago

As long as those brown bits are covered by the fat, there should be no problem with spoilage. Traditionally, people didn't refrigerate confit--whole big chunks of duck and goose preserved in fat.

Wholefoods_user_icon
added almost 2 years ago

Ono/Greenstuff: it's fine - until the first time you dip a spoon in it. As I said, if your kitchen hygiene is less than impeccable, you do run the risk of introducing bacteria, which can then feed on the proteins (more easily than they can on the pure fat).