Real butter is an an important ingredient for cooking and baking. While butter substitutes do exist, there really is no substitute when it comes to flavor and taste. Butter also contains protein, calcium, and vitamins A, D, and E.
Sticks of butter make measuring easy and convenient. Good-to-know butter equivalents are:
1 pound = 4 sticks = 2 cups = 32 Tablespoons
1/2 pound = 2 sticks = 1 cup = 16 Tablespoons
1/4 pound = 1 stick = 1/2 cup = 8 Tablespoons
1/8 pound = 1/2 stick = 1/4 cup = 4 Tablespoons
In the refrigerator: Unopened butter keeps for several weeks in the refrigerator at 39 degrees F or lower. Opened butter should be stored and covered in the refrigerator butter compartment.
In the freezer: Packaged butter wrapped in foil or placed in a resealable plastic freezer bag keeps for 6 – 9 months at 0 degrees F or lower. Unsalted butter is best kept frozen until ready to use.
Both salted and unsalted butter are available in supermarkets. Which should be used for cooking and baking? It depends on personal preference, although many cooks prefer unsalted butter. Either way, both provide the distinctive flavor that only comes from real butter. When using salted butter, you may prefer to omit the salt called for in the recipe.