Ghee is a marvelous food. According to the Ayurvedic text Bhojanakutuhalam, ghee increases longevity and imparts physical stablity, tenderness and lustre. It overcomes fatigue caused by over-exertion. It is wholesome in childhood and strengthening to young and old alike. Praised as life itself, it is a rejuvenative (rasayana) that can reverse the ageing process and improve knowlege, wisdom, memory and cognitive power. Ghee is used as a cooking fat, a condiment, a vehicle for Ayurvedic medicines and as the favoured offering in Vedic fire ceremonies. However, excess use should be avoided as obesity could result. Good for all three doshas although Kapha should use less.
Prep time: 30 min (it takes longer for a larger batch)
Yield: 2 cups
1 pound organic cultured unsalted butter
In a heavy saucepan, heat butter over medium heat. Continue to cook at medium-low heat. The butter will bubble and make bubbling sounds. When it is almost done, milk solids will collect on the bottom of the pan. When it is done (15-20 min), it will look clear and become very quiet.
Quickly, remove it from heat (before burning), and cool slightly. Pour the ghee (the clear golden liquid) though a metal strainer and/or cheesecloth into a glass container. Store ghee at room temperature in a screw top glass jar. Never store ghee in plastic!
- Be sure to keep watch of ghee while cooking.
- Undercooked ghee tends to mold. Overcooked ghee tends to burn. A touch of browning can add a nice flavour.
- After making this once, you are likely to do it again and again! Homemade ghee is simple, pure, and inexpensive
Revised from Amadea Morningstar's The Ayurvedic Cookbook.
Alakananda Ma is a Certified Ayurvedic Doctor (NAMA) and graduate of a top London medical school. She is co-founder of Alandi Ayurveda Clinic and Alandi Ayurveda Gurukula in Boulder Colorado, as well as a spiritual mother, teacher, flower essence maker and storyteller. Alakananda is a well known and highly respected practitioner in the Ayurveda community both nationally and internationally.