By Leah Bourne, The Vivant
butterIn an effort to crack down on all of the things that many of us do wrong in the kitchen, we are on a quest to bust long-held food myths. One that seems to get asked quite a lot has to do with butter. Does it need to be refrigerated, or not? You'll visit some homes where butter is left on the counter, while others would balk at ever leaving a dairy product outside of the refrigerator for long.
The official USDA guideline states that butter should be refrigerated and only softened "ten to fifteen minutes" before use. Though, according John Bruhn, a dairy-foods specialist at the University of California at Davis: "Most butter contains added salt, which impedes the growth of spoilage bacteria." So, while butter will go bad, it happens much more slowly than with unfermented dairy products, such as milk.
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