Compound butter is an easy way to use fresh herbs to liven up the flavor of any dish! I’ll show you how easy compound butter is to make.
This shallot horseradish butter is guaranteed to bring a tasty new dimension to your grilled meats this summer!
Compound Butter, or beurre composé, is a classic French preparation, but if you’ve ever made a garlic-herb butter for a loaf of garlic bread, you’ve essentially made a compound butter.Herbs, spices, and sometimes even wine, are incorporated into softened butter. I prefer to use fresh herbs, and lately I’ve noticed that my local grocery store, has begun to sell “living” herbs, so you can snip off a bit, and then plant the rest!
In California, we essentially have a year-round growing season, which makes it easy to use fresh herbs, but if they are unavailable, you can substitute dried herbs. Compound butters are fun to experiment with, as you can mix any combination of your favorite herbs and spices to suit your taste. I only use unsalted butter when cooking or baking, as I prefer to add the salt myself. But if you do use salted butter, be mindful of when adding additional salt. I also only cook with kosher salt. You can read more about the differences between kosher and table salt here.
Once the herbs and spices are added, it’s formed into a log and chilled. If you prefer to skip that step, just pack the butter into a small dish and chill. Allowing the compound butter to chill, also gives the flavors a chance to meld together and makes it easier to slice the butter.
Although, it’s also common to press the composed butter into molds or small serving dishes. However you choose to serve compound butter, it is delicious on anything from grilled meats and seafood to steamed or grilled vegetables. Spencer’s favorite condiment for beef is horseradish, and I make a killer Creamed Horseradish Sauce for our Prime Rib at Christmas. Last weekend I experimented with this Shallot-Horseradish and Chive Compound Butter over a simple flank steak, and then again this past weekend on New York steaks for a BBQ. Spencer has been slathering the leftover butter on vegetables, chicken, and even a baked potato throughout the week.
Have fun creating your compound butter. I hope that you enjoy it!
- 4 ounces unsalted butter softened, (1 stick)
- 2 Tablespoons prepared horseradish (not creamed horseradish)
- 1 Tablespoon finely chopped shallots about 1
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
- 1 Tablespoon minced chives
In a food processor fitted with a blade, or in a small bowl blend first 5 ingredients, butter through pepper until smooth.
Check for seasoning, adding more horseradish, salt or pepper if necessary.
Mix in chives by hand. On a piece of plastic wrap or aluminum foil, form butter into a log, or press butter into a small dish.
Chill until firm. Slice and serve on steak, chicken or vegetables.