Making Butter

Pat Smyth

Pat Smyth 21st July 2017 Skylark Centre, Athenry, Co. Galway

Making Butter

Interviewer: Clare Doyle (CD)

Interviewee: Pat Smyth (PS)


CD: Did you buy the butter, or make your own?

PS: Make our own butter.

CD: Ah, right. And how would you do that?

PS: You’d have to churn, strain … separate the milk

CD: Ah, right. So, you’d milk the cow in the morning?

PS: Cows…milk the cows in the cabin

CD: Right

PS: And milk

CD: And collect up the milk?

PS: Collect up the milk and put it into a container…

CD: Like a bucket or a basin

PS: A galvanised bucket

CD: Right

PS: What you‘d get, what you’d get one time, you get a basin and you’d get a galvanised bucket … get the galvanised bucket or you could … get the galvanised bucket to separate the milk

CD: Right

PS: You’d fill it up with milk and when you have the buttermilk, you could put the milk, the buttermilk into it

CD: And what kind of a churn did you have, was it a timber one?

PS: A timber one

CD: And you had a handle on it?

PS: Yeah, there was a handle, and a dash inside in that

CD: What’s the dash look like?

PS: It looks like… it looks like a stair, steps on it

CD: Right

PS: One going that way, and one like that

CD: So, they go in different directions

PS: Make, like an ‘X’ to make it work …

CD: Right. And you just have to press it up and down, is it?

PS: Yeah, yeah

CD: That would be hard on the arms, would it?

PS: You have to put …

CD: You have to keep going?

PS: You have to put in the churn, connect the handle and there was, there was a thing on it, a bolt…

CD: Ah, right

PS: And you screw, screw it

CD: Screw it in tight

PS: And you keep…

CD: And whose job was it now to do that?

PS: We all used to have to do it

CD: You all took a turn

PS: And it’s … about an hour

CD: That’s not too bad

PS: Yeah

CD: And how often, would you do that every week?

PS: Oh, you do it every week, yeah

CD: Wold you use a lot of butter?

PS: Every second day even!

CD: Really?

PS: Yeah. We used to use a lot of butter

CD: And what would you do, once, once the churn… you’d have to take the butter then, out of the churn, what would happen after that?

PS: You, eh, you put it into, on an iron, steel plate

CD: Right

PS: Put the two, the two…

CD: They were like paddles, were they?

PS: Yeah, you’d take it out, take it out and leave the butter then, leave it on the table

CD: And you could use it straight away?

PS: You could, and it was lovely then

This page was added on 22/08/2017.

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