A delicious and healthy herbal treat that can be made at home, herbal ghee has its tradition stemming from Ayruveda in India. The benefits to using ghee are numerous. For myself, I find that I do not have the heavy bloating feeling associated with dairy when I have ghee. This plus the delicious taste makes this butter option my choice and I can make it at home!
Ghee is a variation on clarified butter. It is heated to remove the milk solids and then cooled back to a solid. Before cooling, herbs can be added to enhance the flavor and make a delicious spread.
- Unsalted butter (1-2 cups)
- 4-6 cloves of garlic
- 3-4 tablespoons of fresh herbs (I used basil here)
- Knife and cutting board
- Sauce pan
- Mesh strainer
- Muslin cloth (12x12in works well)
- Medium bowl
- Small glass bowl/jar with lid for storage
1. In the sauce pan, melt the butter. As you see the solids form into clumps, use a spoon to scoop out the larger chunks.
2. While your butter is melting, chop your herbs as fine as possible. Remember you will be chewing them later so you want them cut up very fine.
3. When your butter is fully melted (don’t worry if there are still some solids) remove it from the heat. Place your mesh strainer with your cloth inside of it over a bowl. Pour the mixture through the cloth and mesh strainer. It will not all flow through on its own. You can gather the corners of your cloth and squeeze the remaining liquid through. Do not squeeze too hard as the solids will eventually come through the cloth.
4. Clean your sauce pan and return your liquid butter to the pan. Add your herbs and bring the liquid up to a simmer. When the butter starts to smoke, this may happen before your simmer, remove it from the heat.
5. Allow your ghee to cool to room temperature on the counter. This extended time with the herbs and ghee being warm will allow the flavor of the herbs to blend more effectively with the ghee.
6. When cool, place ghee and herbs into a glass jar and refrigerate. After about 20 minutes, stir the mixture to make sure the herbs are suspended in the ghee. Repeat every 20 minutes until the ghee is unable to be mixed. This should take less than one hour.
7. Store your ghee in the refrigerator for longer shelf life. It will soften if left on the counter.
Using your herbal ghee:
This can be used anywhere you would normally use butter and want an extra bit of flavor. The herbal flavor of this is delicious and strong so if you have a picky eater on your hands it may not be for them. I like to use it as a spread on my gluten free bagels or as a different option for seasoning mac-n-cheeze. Using these digestive supporting herbs on carbohydrate rich foods can be great to help digest them more effectively. It can also be used as in meat marinades or as a sauce for proteins as well. Be sure to let us know in our Facebook group what you use this recipe on.
Jillian Carnrick, founder and manager of The Dancing Herbalist, has a Masters of Science Degree in Herbal Medicine, practices as a nutritionist, and is a Certified Personal Trainer and Exercise Is Medicine Professional through the American College of Sports Medicine. The Dancing Herbalist posts on this blog every Thursday. For more of our posts, join us on Patreon. Jillian also presents regular live classes in The Dancing Herbalist’s home herbalist courses online. For more learning opportunities or work one-on-one with Jillian with her wellness and herbal consultations visit The Dancing Herbalist.com.