The flavors of the season in one little pat of butter; this Cranberry and Walnut Compound Butter on French Toast can make a morning extra special.
Christmas seems to have come early for me this year. A ring of the bell, no one there but luckily I spy a package on the stoop. As I bent to retrieve the box and noticed it was from the Irish Dairy Board, I quickly looked up and down the street for Santa or even fairies; I knew what this was and it was a present…for ME!
It’s no secret I love Kerrygold. Long before I even knew they had butter, we had discovered Dubliner cheese and it’s nutty flavor means it’s not only a favorite to have on hand for snacking but it’s often our go to cheese in lieu of Parmesan, it’s that good. I even made some macaroni and cheese I dubbed ‘Golden Mac and Cheese’ in honor of how fabulous it is with Kerrygold Dubliner in it.
I grew up in a family that used margarine; I’m a bit embarrassed to admit that the first time I tried butter I was not a fan. Times have changed and now I’m not just a fan but I’m picky about butter…it’s all Kerrygold’s fault. Try these Brown Butter Molasses Chocolate Chip Cookies and you’ll see why. I blame the butter.
So back to the box. Inside a cooled container were tubs of new Kerrygold products; their Naturally Softer and Reduced Fat Butters. Though their regular butter is considered perfect for baking; I recently had some that was softened sitting on my counter and I spread it on my morning toast. I even tweeted about how good it was.
Oh my gosh…do you think they created these products just for me? Shh…don’t burst my bubble; I am going to presume that’s exactly how it went down (forget that just happened two weeks ago…they have fairies, they work FAST!).
I am one of several bloggers that have been invited to compete in a contest using these new products, developed more specifically for use other than baking so I thought developing a compound butter would be fun. I don’t do a lot of these things. I consider myself a creative cook but not a recipe developer. I don’t sit and plan and put together ingredients; I just do. And so I hoped I wouldn’t be sorry that I accepted this challenge.
Luckily I found my inspiration from a cocktail. That’s right…I was using cranberries to create a new cocktail and it hit me how appropriate it would be to combine both the butter and the berries I love. And I mean LOVE. After years of that canned mess; from the first recipe I ever made using fresh berries I’ve been hooked.
My first thoughts went to cranberries and maple syrup but I’ve done that before with cranberry sauce and wanted something a bit more unique. Orange? Sort of typical with cranberries but that’s because it is so good and I thought the zest would be pretty with the candied berries I was now planning to use. But it’s the walnuts that put this over the top.
After covering the finished product, it was back in the fridge to cool and I had some time to think how best to serve it. Truth is, this butter would be good on a cracker but I wanted something more. And that something more became French toast. Another sort of ‘just do’ moment in that I had half a loaf of French bread leftover from last night’s dinner. I could count on one hand how often I’ve actually had French bread for French toast so it sort of called to me; all I had to do was answer!
Perfect as is but in our family French toast without maple syrup just does not happen so I took the dish one step further and made some cranberry compote with a touch of maple syrup. Why have I never done this before?? This would be a perfect breakfast dish for a holiday gathering but in the meantime? I’m calling it dinner!
PIN ‘Cranberry Walnut Compound Butter’
French Toast with Toasted Walnut, Orange, Cranberry and Brown Sugar Compound Butter
For the Butter:
- 4 oz 1/2 tub of Kerrygold Naturally Softer Pure Irish Butter
- ¼ cup toasted walnuts
- 1 tsp orange zest
- 1 Tbsp dark brown sugar
- 3-4 Tbsp of minced fresh cranberries
For the Cranberry Compote:
- ½ cup water
- ¼ cup sugar
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 1 cup fresh cranberries
To Make the Butter:
- Combine the Kerrygold butter, toasted walnuts, brown sugar and 1 tsp of orange zest in a food processor
- Process until smooth.
- Remove butter from processor and fold in minced cranberries
- Divide into (2) 4 oz containers; garnish with additional zest and a fresh cranberry
- Chill until firm
To Make the Cranberry Compote:
- Combine water, syrup and sugar in medium saucepan and heat on medium until sugar is dissolved.
- Add cranberries and cook on medium until they pop; approximately 3-4 minutes. Cool.
- Reserve 2 Tbsp of whole berries
- Combine remainder of berries and syrup in processor and process to desire consistency.
- Place French toast on plate, add a dollop of butter and finish with some cranberry compote
I received these butters at no cost from Kerrygold. All recipes and commentary are mine.