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I'm interested in making the sort of butter tea drunk in the Himalayan regions. However, one of its key ingredients, yak butter, is not commonly available in Europe where I live. What can I substitute it with such that my butter tea will taste as close as possible to the Himalayan original?

The shops here sell butter made from cow's milk, goat's milk, and (rarely) buffalo milk. Which of these three, if any, would most closely match the flavour profile of yak butter? I understand that yak butter has a very high fat content, so is there any way I could process the cow/goat/buffalo butter, or anything else I could add to the butter tea, to raise the fat content?

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Based on how I remember it from when I lived in Nepal, buffalo milk butter would be the best substitute. In fact, given the popularity of water buffalo as herd animals in the Kathmandu Valley, it's even a local alternative there.

Goat butter isn't any more like yak butter than cow butter is, and is generally more expensive. Your ideal among cow butters would be some brand of cultured butter, which you could even make yourself. This will give you some of the funky flavors in the homemade yak butters that Tibetans traditionally use.

Also make sure to have the right kind of tea. And yes, it's supposed to be that salty.

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