Do you always use unsalted butter, particularly in cookie and cake recipes, if the recipe calls for it?
we always use unsalted butter, period.
Since I prefer salted I always use it...just cut back on any other salt in the recipe. Even if there isn't any other salt in the recipe I've never noticed a big difference...but I also like salt!
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As an avid baker this question has always puzzled me so I was anxious to read this thread. I am finding many recipes that don't stipulate which one to use. The above link answers many of these questions addressing the differences between the two and why some recipes advise one over the other.
Unsalted because I can control the sodium that way.
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I heard on the Martha Stewart show that there really isn't much salt in the butter and it doesn't make a lot of difference.
In cheaper house brands of butter, salt is often used to mask "off" flavors and less-than-optimum freshness. The last store brand I bought contained sour undertones. Other brands haven't been too bad in the salted form. For recipes where butter isn't the foremost flavor, I'll use a house brand for economy's sake. In recipes like spritz cookies or shortbread, where the butter flavor is supposed to shine, I don't compromise. I use unsalted Land O' Lakes without exception when it really counts.
We have access to a niche dairy and they make their own butter so that's all I use. I don't think there is much difference other than salt helps preserve the shelf life of salted butter.
Most times you'll pay higher price for unsalted and it's sometimes found frozen in the grocery store. So go figure, I'd rather have fresh anything than have to choose from a frozen product.
I've never been a fan of unsalted butter and never used it at home. Much prefer the taste of salted. But after reading some on that website, I can see where unsalted could make a difference in some baking instances.
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Finally, someone read that informative web site. I found it enlightening.
Very good article...so it's "6 of one, half a dozen of the other"...
I used salted butter - Land O Lakes - period
My step-D the self-proclaimed gourmet/chef comments every time the subject of butter is brought up. I finally told her that any cook knows how to adjust the amount of salt in a recipe to compensate for salted butter.
LOL Just thought...I should've said, That any cook 'worth their salt' knows how to adjust the salt in a recipe... bwahahaha
It's a subject chefs do not even agree on, so what's the big deal?
As to the last paragraph on that above link pertaining to shortening...I don't buy it. I prefer the flavor of butter to the ick of shortening. I've learned to put my Toll House cookie dough in the refrigerator to chill prior to scooping out on the cookie sheet. Works for me! For pie crust I use lard.
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Unsalted, it has a shorter shelf life and tastes better in baking. I use a local brand since I found that some of the national brands have questionable practices as to their treatment of animals. I also like to support local dairies.
I tried unsalted once and could disern Noooo flavor, soooooo; I'm a salted-butter gal
One difference between salted and unsalted butter is the shelf life. Salt acts as a natural preservative, in addition to flavoring.
Unsalted butter sours much more quickly if left out as room temp. And, if you look at dates on the package, you'll see a much shorter time period than salted butter.
And, when unsalted butter is not made with AA cream (sweet cream instead of cream already soured), it becomes VERY sour after the date, very quickly.
I do know that if you are making the Greek dessert Bahkala that layers the Phyllo dough as you cover each layer with butter, it better be unsalted.
Well anyhow, Merry Christmas!
I use a combination of both - when I'm doing my Christmas baking. But for longer shelf life, I alsways buy "salted."
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