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The common way for taking butter from milk is to shake the cream captured from milk. There is also a traditional way to shake yogurt to separate butter. However, I was unable to find any instruction for separating butter from yogurt.

Although, separating butter from high-fat cream is quite easy, but full separation of cream from milk at home is almost impossible. However, transferring milk to yogurt is quite easy. Therefore, there is an advantage for getting butter from yogurt (rather than cream), when the starting point is raw milk.

  1. Why this method is not popular? Is there any drawback for that?
  2. Where to find a practical instruction for this procedure? the best temperature? using Greek (heavy) yogurt or adding water to it?
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When you say "there is a traditional way" to get butter from yogurt, what do you mean? Do you know where it's traditional? –  Jefromi Jul 31 '13 at 17:16

5 Answers 5

up vote 11 down vote accepted

I am skeptical that butter from yogurt is a thing.

When yogurt is made the milk proteins denature and form a mesh that traps all the large molecules in the milk. Water, sugar, and some small molecules can come out but the fat never does- it's huge and tightly bound up in the gel.

Even when yogurt is blended up the whey will separate out but the fat never does. I have a hard time believe that extricating the fat from that protein mesh will be easier than just letting it rise to the surface in milk.

Perhaps thoroughly cooking the yogurt would melt out the fat but you would still lose the rest of the milk solids and would have ghee.

With purchasable yogurt it would be even less feasible because it is often made from low-fat milk to begin with.

EDIT-

Searching online I was able to find Indian recipes for making butter from yogurt: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_vK8hW_oSu0
In this case they made yogurt from heavy cream. The goal was a cultured butter- not easier butter.

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very interesting information! –  All Jul 31 '13 at 16:43
2  
The point is well taken: European style butter is also made from cultured cream.... –  SAJ14SAJ Jul 31 '13 at 16:47

The best butter is made from yoghurt. Besides you get a bonus which is ayran (watery yogurt). Making butter from milk is easy as told. But not tasty because the fat has milk taste. When you extract it from yogurt the butter has its pure taste. İ am from turkey and all the butter in the villages of turkey are made from yogurt. Shelf-stable products in markets are made from milk because of economy of scale. We buy the real butter from the village women in the town bazaars. Anyway, these are for your Turkey visit. But be aware of how real butter is made!

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This is the traditional Indian system as well. But you cannot get it in India, very nice you can get it in Turkey! –  Amala Mar 9 at 14:34

You can get butter from soured milk or soured cream, but this is not the same thing as yogurt. It uses different culture and fermentation techniques than making yogurt. In today's parlance, what you'd need is "buttermilk" (the original meaning is the whey left after making butter out of it, but today the complete soured milk is sold under the name, without the butter separated). But I am not sure that you can use store-bought buttermilk, it might be stabilized chemically and physically in ways which prevent the fat separation.

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Indian history says that Indian people made butter from curd (yogurt). Nowadays, in Western countries, butter is made from heavy cream.

But both method can be used to make butter.

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It is a natural way to do it without refrigeration because excess milk can be converted to yoghurt and then large batches made into butter and then ghee which can be stored for a long time. –  Amala Mar 9 at 14:34

There is a huge difference between the Butter in west(from milk) and The one from East (from Yogurt)(India ,Pakistan Turkey etc) There are many advantages of Butter from Yogurt but I Will highlight only one and thats is the Bacteria Culture present in Butter which is separated from yogurt. Go search it yourself.

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Hi Farooq. Welcome to Seasoned Advice! What is it about the bacteria you mention that is advantageous? –  Preston Fitzgerald Jun 21 at 22:06

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