Grilled cheese sandwiches and buttered toast are two of my favorites. But buttering the bread when the butter has been taken straight from the refrigerator can be challenging because cold butter doesn’t spread very easily. Taking the butter out ahead of time to soften is the easiest way to solve the problem, but for those times when you don’t want to wait and don’t want to use margarine (yuck!), the Cooks Innovations Butter Mill might just be the best solution yet. Let’s see how it works and give it a try.
Note: Images can be clicked to view a larger size.
The Cooks Innovations Butter Mill is a specially designed stick butter holder that mills the butter providing thin ribbons that will spread easierthan thick slices of cold butter on soft bread and toast.
The Butter Mill is made of three main parts. The base with the butter holder, the blade and the lid. All the parts are plastic except for the blade.
The removable blade looks very similar to a food grater or microplane. Tiny blades next to holes scrape the top of the butter to extrude thin ribbons of butter.
The main cylinder has a base that you turn with your hand. As you turn the base it raises the butter so that it scrapes against the grater blade.
In the image above you can see that the butter holder (red) in the cylinder has been lifted by turning the base several times.
To load the Butter Mill you just cut a cold stick of butter in half and remove the paper wrapper.
The two pieces of cold butter then slide into the holder on on top of the other. You might have to shave off a bit from the ends to get the pieces to fit in the slot.
The blade then locks in place on top of the cylinder. All that is left is to grab some bread and a knife. Holding the cylinder in one and and turning the base will raise the butter. As you turn the base, thin ribbons of butter will start to appear.
You can then scrape a knife across the top to collect the butter so that you can spread it on your bread. I found that this worked better than trying to spread cold butter slices on soft bread, but it wasn’t as easy as spreading pre-softened butter.
However if you’re jonesing for a grilled cheese and don’t want to wait for soft butter, the Butter Mill was a big help.
I think the Butter Mill works best when you want to spread butter on something hot like toast or corn on the cob. The grated butter melts faster than cold chunks.
When you’re done using the Butter Mill it needs to be stored in the refrigerator. Trying to use it when the butter is warm and softened would probably create a big mess.
I had no problems using the Butter Mill, but Jeanne, my better half, had a lot of trouble turning the base. She complained that it was hard to grip and turn. Even when I would demonstrate how to do it and immediately hand it to her to try, she just couldn’t get it to turn because she lacks sufficient grip in her hands. The center part of the cylinder that you hold can become slippery, which can make it harder to use. For this fact, I would not recommend the Butter Mill for someone with arthritis in their hands or other dexterity issues.
Jeanne also commented that she thought the Butter Mill was making us use more butter than we normally would without it. I think she’s right because we’ve already almost used a whole stick of butter in only one week, which would usually last us significantly longer.
If you’re looking for an easier way to spread cold butter, the Cooks Innovations Butter Mill might be the solution for you as long as you have strong hands and watch the amount you use.
Although the Butter Mill performed as advertised, it didn’t last too long in my household. Jeanne had trouble turning the base and I eventually ended up thinking it was more trouble than just setting our regular butter tray on the counter for 30 minutes before needing it. Also disassembling, washing and reassembling was a hassle.
Source: The sample for this review was provided by Cooks Innovations. Please visit their site for more info.