French butter dish - how do you stop this from happening?

The butter falls out of the dish and into the water! What's the trick to make this not happen?

I'm really enjoying having fresh, spreadable butter... but ... frustrated by soggy bread from excess water. Crammed the butter in the dish with great enthusiasm, so it's not falling out from lack of forcefulness when loading. There must be something faulty with the dish?

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11 Comments

Thingamajig February 24, 2019
Found a company that makes them and they said this...

Q: My butter falls out of the bell into the water.
A: That means that you're not packing it tightly enough into the bell. When filled properly the butter will not fall out. Another possibility is that the water or possibly the butter is too warm and needs to be a little cooler.

Thinking back, either/or was our issue when it happened in our butter crock.
 
Gammy November 13, 2018
My kept falling out, too. I gave up and use a traditional butter dish with a lid now... problem solved and my butter stays soft. Now I use the base (where the water goes) as my stovetop salt pig.
 
cookbookchick December 1, 2014
Nancy, it's more commonly called a "butter bell." Google it and you will see many in various colors and patterns. The butter is placed in the top portion which is then turned upside down into the bottom which holds an inch or so of water. Thus the butter is sealed off from the air by the water, keeping it fresh while at room temperature. The point is to have a bit of butter (these things hold maybe half a cup) always soft and ready for spreading on toast or whatever.
 
robin L. November 13, 2018
mine keeps falling down, too.

 
nancy E. December 1, 2014
What is this thing you are all talking about?
 
cdilaura December 1, 2014
Usually the only time the butter falls out is when the weather is really warm or if it isn't packed hard enough. We recommend letting the butter soften a bit before loading. And if it seems to warm or your kitchen gets too warm, it may help to put in the fridge for a bit to make sure it doesn't soften too much. Hope that helps!
 
trampledbygeese December 1, 2014
Thank you for the advice.

The butter was soft, it was freshly churned and at room temp. I pressed the butter as per normal, then scouped and pressed it firmly into the bell. Homemade butter does seem a bit harder than store bought stuff when kept cool but is just as soft at room temp. Maybe that's the problem?

The weather here is two sweater weather outside, one sweater inside - inside 70F or considerably less. That shouldn't be too warm for butter, should it?
 
ktr December 1, 2014
I love your sweater description of the weather! And, I'm jealous; it was -19°F on my way to work this morning. I'd say that makes it about 5 sweater weather.
 
cookbookchick December 1, 2014
It happens to me occasionally, too, don't know why. On the water question, I try to freshen the water every two or three days.
 
drbabs December 1, 2014
Gosh, trampled, this has never happened to me, but I'll hazard a guess. After you put the butter into the dish, compact it well (so there's no gap for the water to get under). Use cold water and change the water frequently. I hope this helps.
 
trampledbygeese December 1, 2014
Thank you for the advise. Good reminder on the frequent changing of the water. How often do you change yours?

I did pack the butter in the bell very firmly with very few if any air bubbles or gaps.

I'm wondering if the butter part of the dish is simply too smooth and the suction created by taking it out of the water pulled the butter out. It's not warm enough in the house for the butter to have melted.
 
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