If you think of my cooking, it wouldn’t be because of food trends, because I’m very stubborn. Sometimes to a fault, I admit, but I’ll come around eventually. I remember resisting sun-dried tomatoes and basil pesto in the early 80’s because they were everywhere. I’m so glad I succumbed.
But a butter board?! Well, if my husband and I had never chosen to order a butter board at a hotel restaurant in 2022, I would certainly not be blogging about it. It was such a decadent joy, I didn’t even take pictures.
The hotel was the Sage Lodge in Pray, Montana. The restaurant was the Fireside Room, where everyone who worked there looked like they were extras on the show Yellowstone. But the food and service were perfect. Below is a photo from the back of the hotel.
You can see it below – a warmed baguette and the butter is topped with togarashi, one of my favorite seasoning mixtures, also called shichimi togarashi.
I bought my togarashi from Amazon, of course. The ingredients include red chili pepper, orange peel, sesame seeds, Japanese pepper, ginger and seaweed.
Anyway, our butter board was such a treat for us, I knew I’d have to recreate it.
I loved the restaurant presentation, which was simply the butter and bread, but I could also see the addition of some spring vegetables. Radishes came to mind first, as I already eat them with butter and salt, but then carrots, green beans, potatoes….so many options.
I also wanted to experiment with part beef tallow and part butter. I’ve been intrigued with tallow for a while, and I found a jar at Whole Foods. As an option, you could use a bone marrow and butter mixture, which I’d only heard about watching The Lost Kitchen.
From researching online, I discovered that the recommended ratio for a tallow butter mixture is 8 ounces butter to 2 ounces tallow.
Tallow Butter Board
16 ounces unsalted butter
4 ounces tallow
Place a bowl large enough to accommodate 20 ounces of liquid over a pot of hot water and let melt.
When melted, place the bowl over a larger bowl of ice water and whisk constantly until the mixture cools, about 2 minutes. At that point remove from the ice water and continue whisking occasionally to keep the tallow and butter emulsified. Notice it gets paler as time goes on.
After about 20 minutes the tallow is ready to spread on a board or platter.
I used togarashi, coarse salt, and lemon zest on top. But I also added fennel fronds and a few baby purple onion rings. (I don’t recommend bothering with the onion rings.)
And just like at the restaurant, this tallow butter was phenomenal.
Of course this butter board can be made with 100% high quality butter, but adding the tallow was fun. You really need the bread warmed to enjoy the full flavors. My favorite additions besides the bread were the potatoes, and terra chips!
I stored the left over tallow butter in a jar in the refrigerator. I imagine it will have a fairly long shelf life, if we don’t eat it all soon!