Come Along On A Virtual Tour Of This French Butter Factory

Photographed by Janelle Jones.
This story was originally published on January 30, 2017.

Butter makes everything better. It's simply indisputable, and that's why we smear it on everything. But have you ever thought about what it takes to make this magical flavor-enhancing spread? On a recent episode of PBS' Mind of a Chef, chef Ludo Lefebvre took a peek inside France's Jean-Yves Bordier Butter factory. The segment proves once and for all, if anyone knows how to make butter, it's the French.

At this factory, all the butter is made by hand and is customized based on specific orders placed by chefs and restaurants. The process starts by taking blocks of butter and rolling them out on a wooden board. The employees then begin kneading it by hand and based on chef Lefebvre's face, this step can actually be quite physically demanding. Next, salt is added, and the butter becomes more malleable and wet. They then run their fingers through the butter to make sure there aren't any large grains left behind. Once it's all well-mixed, the butter it separated into large mounds. Then, the cutting and shaping begin.

Seeing their hands glide through the massive piles of butter makes us crave it even more than usual — and that's saying a lot. We aren't sure if it's just their beautiful French accents, but these people make the butter production process look like a true art form. Watch the whole process here:
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