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Old 05-26-2009, 03:21 PM
enigma enigma is offline
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Default Ghee (clarified butter) storage life



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I was wondering if anyone can tell me how long can I safely store Ghee (clarified butter) without refrigeration?

I know I can make the ghee myself,but I bought a big 2kg tub in the local supermarket instead. It found it in the refrigerated section section of the supermarket and the tub is marked with a 6 month expiration date.

It is quite expensive here,so before I buy more,I just want to make sure that I can store it long term.I've been told that homemade ghee can be stored unrefrigerated for up to at least 2 years so presumably the same would apply to store bought ghee,regardless of the expiration date stamped on it?
Old 05-26-2009, 03:31 PM
ratamiss ratamiss is offline
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I cook a lot of indian food so I have a container of homemade ghee in my kitchen that is 14 months old and it taste fine still. Its been sitting on the counter at room temp the whole time.

It can be treated like any other oil and I would say typically it has a 2 year shelf life minimum.

Anything in the store that is refrigerated prolly isnt true ghee, making it is quite easy and is definatly the best route.
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Old 05-26-2009, 03:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ratamiss View Post
I cook a lot of indian food so I have a container of homemade ghee in my kitchen that is 14 months old and it taste fine still. Its been sitting on the counter at room temp the whole time.

It can be treated like any other oil and I would say typically it has a 2 year shelf life minimum.

Anything in the store that is refrigerated prolly isnt true ghee, making it is quite easy and is definatly the best route.
Thanx Ratamiss.
It says 100% ghee on the container so I think that it is probably true ghee.They always tend to put the butter,ghee and other dairy products on refrigerated shelves in the supermarket.

Making my own ghee will work out more expensive since butter is expensive in comparison to margarine and I will need quite a bit of butter to make a 2 kg tub of ghee. So although the shop bought tub is expensive,it still works out cheaper than if I had to make it myself.

Btw, am I correct in assuming that one is supposed to use butter and not margarine to make ghee?

I think perhaps I should take a chance with the store bought ghee and see how long it will store unrefrigerated
Old 05-26-2009, 05:06 PM
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yes, given the realtive obscurity of the product in the US, im guessing the supermarket just saw "butter" and stuck it with the dairy :P

the best thing for making ghee is cultured unsalted butter(finding cultured butter is very important to the taste)
Old 05-26-2009, 05:20 PM
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yes, given the realtive obscurity of the product in the US, im guessing the supermarket just saw "butter" and stuck it with the dairy :P

the best thing for making ghee is cultured unsalted butter(finding cultured butter is very important to the taste)
I'm actually in South Africa and we do have quite a large Indian community here,but I think that the supermarket staff like you said, see the word 'butter' and then just put it on the same shelves as the other dairy stuff
Old 05-26-2009, 06:51 PM
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You should do a small test just to see how pure your store-bought stuff is: just melt a bunch of it in a saucepan on low heat and see whether anything precipitates out:
No= good
Yes= bad
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Old 05-27-2009, 01:47 AM
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You should do a small test just to see how pure your store-bought stuff is: just melt a bunch of it in a saucepan on low heat and see whether anything precipitates out:
No= good
Yes= bad
By 'precipitates' I am assuming you mean if it splatters/sizzles/smokes when heated up?

I did as you suggested and heated it up over low heat.
I kept it in on the stove for about 8 minutes just to make sure of the result.

When I heated it,it melted,but no splattering,sizzling or smoke at all.I even turned up the heat on high and still no smoke,splattering or sizzling.

Does this mean it is true ghee and good to store long term?
Old 05-27-2009, 06:52 AM
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yes, thats good stuff
Old 05-27-2009, 06:06 PM
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No, I didn't mean sizzling and smoke, keep the heat nice and low and you shouldn't have splattering either.

What I know as ghee involves taking butter and melting it over low heat. "Precipitation" is when something which is dissolved in a mixture separates out of it - such as water vapor separating out of the atmosphere - first as clouds, then by falling as rain or snow. When you melt butter and let it settle for a while, two layers will precipitate out of the mixture, leaving the main layer in the middle, which is the 'ghee' or 'butter oil' you want.

On the top you get some fatty impurities (white goo), and at the bottom you get what I'm pretty sure is lactic acid (milky white liquid). You want to get rid of both of those; the easiest way I've found is to make it solidify again (let it cool to room temp then put it in the fridge), then scrape the fats off the top, and drain the lactic acid from the bottom by moving the ghee to another container or just pouring it out through a hole you make in the ghee.

My suggestion involved doing things similar to the above to check whether what you have is pure - if it's pure then nothing should have precipitated out, which is what happened judging from your description.
Old 05-28-2009, 05:07 AM
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Yes it seems to be pure Ghee,which is great cause that means I can just buy it,
save money in the process and I won't have to make it myself.

I'm definitely going to add Ghee to my preps now that I know I can store it long term.
Going to stock up this month on at least 1 years supply.
I already have 2 years worth of cooking oils stocked up,so if I add Ghee to my preps
I am completely covered in that department.

Anyways guys,thank you so much for your advice and help,much appreciated!
Old 05-28-2009, 05:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SheepDog View Post
You should do a small test just to see how pure your store-bought stuff is: just melt a bunch of it in a saucepan on low heat and see whether anything precipitates out:
No= good
Yes= bad
Ghee is clarified butter how will this test work? That is how you make Ghee heat and strain,spoon,cheese cloth,what ever.
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