A Little Canola Oil Will Help Prevent Butter From Burning Too Quickly

Browning butter is a culinary process that unlocks a rich, nutty flavor, transforming this humble ingredient into liquid gold. However, it can be a delicate dance between achieving that heavenly browned perfection and accidentally burning the butter, resulting in a bitter taste. Luckily, there's a simple trick that will help you prevent burning the butter, and it calls for another simple ingredient: canola oil. 

To fully appreciate the brilliance of canola oil, let's first understand why browning butter can be a bit tricky. Butter is composed of milk solids and water. When heated, the milk solids caramelize and turn brown, imparting that delightful aroma and flavor that is so delicious. However, these milk solids are also delicate and can easily scorch and become bitter if the heat is too high or the butter is left unattended.

Canola oil, with its neutral flavor and high smoke point, comes to the rescue as the perfect partner for browning butter. Its neutral taste won't overshadow the rich, nutty notes of the browned butter, and its high smoke point means it can withstand the heat of the pan during the browning process without burning.

How to use canola oil with butter

The key to achieving perfectly browned butter without burnt milk solids is a harmonious blend of butter and canola oil. Simply add a half teaspoon of canola oil to coat the pan before browning the butter. This small amount is enough to keep the butter from overheating and will ensure that the milk solids brown beautifully without turning bitter. Remember to use medium-low heat to keep the pan from becoming too hot.

It can also be helpful to cube or cut the butter into smaller chunks so that it will evenly heat and brown. By using smaller pieces, you will prevent the butter from browning too quickly on the outside, and potentially burning, before the interior can brown. Gently swirling the pan or stirring the butter with a wooden spoon can also help prevent any one area of the pan from scorching the butter. Once the butter is as browned as you would like, remove it from the heat immediately and pour the butter into another container to cool. Not only will this actively stop the cooking process, but it will prevent the hot pan from further cooking or burning the butter. With these tips and by incorporating a small amount of canola oil into your process for browning butter, you'll be able to savor the full, rich flavors without the bitter aftertaste of burnt milk solids. It's a culinary secret that will elevate your dishes to new heights of deliciousness.