We churn at home with a machine churn but there are several other sorts as well. We put the cream in a milk pan, until it is thick. After a few days, we put it into the churn. There is a custom, whereby some people but a coal under the churn to ensure that the butter is good. I know an old woman who would not give a man a coal to light his pipe while the churning was going on in case there was not a good amount of butter. We out cold water into the churn in summer and hot water in winter. When the butter is done, we take it out with butter pats, then we put it in a dish so that it can be washed and salted. I once heard a story about a woman who had a “dead man’s hand” for churning the butter.
Collector: Caroline Larkin, Aughrim, Co. Galway
Place: Aughrim, Co. Galway
Footnote: Duchas, ‘The Schools’ Collection’, www.duchas.ie
Add a comment about this page