I’m supposed to be baking my twins’ birthday cake today. The recipe calls for 2 sticks of softened butter. Butter that I was going to get out of the freezer last night and set on the counter so it would be ready to go when I was. Guess who didn’t get the butter out of the freezer last night? Yep- this currently addle brained mother of 3. This week has gotten so insanely busy that I forgot in all my running right up until bedtime to set the butter out. Sigh. But it’s ok! I learned a trick a couple years ago that gets me softened butter WAY faster than leaving it out & waiting and doesn’t leave me with half melted, half hard butter from the microwave. Behold…

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Yes- it’s a piece of marble (formerly a cheese slicer) and a glass bowl. You can just as easily use ceramic or stoneware- that’s what the person who gave me the idea used. The point is to use something that will hold heat, softening the butter gently. The water out of our tap’s hot side is about 120 degrees (my in laws won’t set it lower) so it’s hot enough without heating it farther. If you don’t have water that hot out of the tap heat enough water to fill your bowl in either the microwave or a kettle. Once the water is hot use it to heat the plate (or in my case the slab of marble), then discard the water in a manner of your choosing. Although you might hang onto it in case you need to heat your bowl & base again! Once your bowl & base are heated make it look like the picture and leave it to sit for awhile. In my case about 45 minutes to an hour because it was frozen. If you’re starting with butter out of the fridge it will take about 10-15 minutes. It takes a little longer but I like this method MUCH better than the microwave.

Now I can move on to cake baking. I hope; assuming I haven’t forgotten anything else!

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