Floral and Flavoured Butter:
Rosemary Flower Butter with Grana Padano Cheese
Sometimes an idea comes to me in the middle of the night, when I am tossing and turning, reflecting on events that have happened, or worrying about things that may not happen……..the night is still and my thoughts seem to hang in the darkness suspended like cobwebs – visible but fragile and flimsy. A full moon shines through the old casement window and an owl hoots, with melancholy and urgency……..my ideas come and go, drifting lazily in and out of my mind, it’s hard to catch them sometimes before I finally fall back to sleep. On waking in the morning, most of my grand ideas have disappeared with the night, gone and barely remembered, but sometimes, one remains, and so it was with today’s recipe, or serving idea, simple and inspired by an on-line friend’s recipe; it’s a “middle of the night” idea how to serve butter that uses some of my prolific rosemary blossom…….a flavoured, floral butter with sea salt and Italian cheese, Rosemary Flower Butter with Grana Padano.
Not a recipe as such, but a pretty and tasty way to serve butter with breakfast toast or dinner party bread rolls, or even as part of the filling for a savoury sandwich, my recipe today uses rosemary flowers, as opposed to rosemary leaves (or needles and blades as they are sometimes called). I often make floral butters and my rose petal butter is much-loved by family and friends – it’s the perfect accompaniment with freshly made scones for a Cream Tea. Marigold butter is also another favourite – I make it to accompany pasta dishes and it’s beautiful when added to omelettes and eggs, plus the colour is rich and sunny…….and although I have used rosemary flowers before, in my floral flavoured salt, I have never added them to butter.
So, when I made one of my friend’s recipes recently, for butter with rosemary flowers, I decided to develop the idea further and add grated Italian cheese and serve the butter in little pots for a dinner party I was hosting. The butter was beautifully savoury and salty, with a subtle rosemary flavour and everyone commented on how pretty they looked in their little pots. I served my Rosemary Flower Butter with Grana Padano Cheese as part of the starter, alongside a big bowl of salad and a basket of assorted artisan bread rolls. Everyone LOVE it, and rather than being the accompaniment for the bread, the butter took centre stage and became the main event of the first course.
I am considering making some more flavoured butters very soon, with other herb flowers, as well as adding truffle oil, sun-dried tomatoes and maybe a spot of blue cheese too. It’s such an easy and pretty way to serve butter at a formal, or indeed informal meal, and these wee pots of butter would also be great for picnics. The only proviso is to use GOOD QUALITY butter – I used some excellent French butter that had added sea salt flakes, but there are some wonderful British butters out there, and I am going to try this recipe with Rodda’s Cornish Butter next time I make them, with some strands of saffron. That’s it for today, have a great day and see you soon with some more recipes and kitchen chat! Karen