This post is going to be about one of my favorite foods in the whole wide world – BUTTER! I eat a lot of butter, as many of my friends can attest, but I don’t eat just any old butter – I make an effort to buy the top quality stuff. It tastes better and is more nutritious, in general. Here are some of the more notable options I’ve found in Astoria.
Kerrygold Butter. This is my go-to butter and I usually have a block or two of it in the house at any one time. It’s made from milk from grass-fed cows, so it’s really high in CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid, a reported cancer fighter), Vitamin A and K2. And it tastes marvelous. The good news is that it is readily available in both specialty stores and at the supermarket, though there it’s usually only available there as salted butter.
Places in Astoria I’ve purchased Kerrygold butter: Key Food (various locations), Greenline Organic (22-33 31st Street), Euro Market (30-42 31st Street), and further afield at Trader Joes (Manhattan locations). It runs anywhere between $3-4 for 1/2 pound.
Organic Valley Pasture Butter. This seasonal butter is from Organic Valley and is (theoretically, at least) available May-September. Despite these limitations, I’ve seen it year-round. It is made from cows on pasture, meaning it’s grass-fed and contains a similar nutritional makeup as the Kerrygold above. It tastes really good. I like its shiny green wrapper. I’ve begun to see it more and more places around town, too.
Places in Astoria I’ve purchased Pasture Butter: Key Food (various locations), Greenline Organic (22-33 31st Street), Fresh Start (29-13 23rd Avenue), and further afield at Whole Foods (Manhattan locations). It runs anywhere between $4.50-6 for a 1/2 pound.
Kate’s Homemade Butter. This local-ish butter is made from milk that does not contain artificial hormones, and is based in New England. I have friends that swear by it. It is unclear if the cows eat grass, grain, or a combination of the two, but my guess is the latter because of its faint yellow color. It is churned in small batches, which is cool.
Places I’ve purchased Kate’s Homemade Butter: Fresh Start (29-13 23rd Avenue) is the only place I’ve seen it, but likely it’s available at the other natural food stores in the area. It runs around $3.99 for a 1/2 pound.
Beurre de Chimay. I discovered this butter last week while in Sunnyside. It is made from the milk of cows that are allowed to roam around an area on the Belgium/France border. They eat grass and get a lot of exercise. It’s incredibly creamy with a beautiful yellow color. A new favorite!
Places I’ve purchased Beurre de Chimay: Superior Market (40-08 Queens Blvd). It runs about $3.99 for a 1/2 pound.
Lurpak. I must admit, I haven’t tried this butter personally, but I hear excellent things about it. It comes from Denmark, and the milk is from both cows that eat grass and grain. It is also cultured, which gives it a bit of a tang.
Places I’ve seen Lurpak: Parrot Market (31-12 Ditmars Blvd), Euro Market (30-42 31st Street). It is a super premium butter and can cost up to $7 for a half pound.
Another option is to make your own butter from heavy cream. Joy the Baker has a recipe for homemade butter using a stand mixer, which looks excellent.
Additionally, I wanted to bring up the topic of the “Amish Butter” brand, which is all over the place these days. Be warned – it is NOT made by the Amish themselves, but is simply “rolled” in a way that is similar to the way the Amish apparently do to their butter. My friend Wardeh discussed it here. Do not be fooled by deceptive marketing!
I’m always on the look0ut for great butter and places to buy it. If you are a butter fan, what is your favorite brand? And where do you purchase it? Please leave your answers in the comments – I’m dying to know!