You well know that I love a fancy thing–whether that’s munching on homemade potato chips and cheap caviar or chopping up some beef for a tartare, I’m definitely a bougie bitch. But a bougie bitch who also loves cheap short cuts.
One of the my favorite of these is a compound butter, which is basically butter mixed with other ingredients therefore making it fancy. This is an easy thing that you can do to add instant flavor to meats, veggies, or, in this case, pasta.
For this recipe, I decided to make a miso and green onion butter, but honestly, you can make whatever combo you like. The classic one is thyme and lemon, but I’ve made ones with roasted garlic, with soy sauce, with all sorts of fresh herbs. The options are endless.
The first thing you need to do is to take your butter out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature. (You can microwave it to soften it a touch if you’re short on time, but watch it closely…this won’t work if it’s melted.)
Finely chop whatever ingredients you’re adding to your butter. I tossed mine into my spice grinder, but you can do a fine chop in whatever way you’d like. (If you’re making a lot, a food process would work for this.)
From there, you’ll want to add your softened butter and basically smash it all up until it’s thoroughly mixed either with a potato masher or in a food processor. After that, lay it on a piece of parchment paper (or plastic wrap) and roll it into a pretty log.
That’s it! If you don’t count the time it takes to soften the butter, this all comes together in under five minutes. Now store it in your fridge and use it on everything for the next week!
So now that you’ve got your compound butter, what do you do with it? My favorite is a take on buttery noodles. It’s simple and incredibly wholesome. You’ll feel like a kid again but without all that childhood trauma.
I like to use somen, a thin Japanese noodle, for this recipe, but honestly, you could use whatever you have around. (Angel hair would be a great substitute.)
You’ll also want a green thing. I had spinach from the farmer’s market on hand, but it would also be greeat with kale, radish greens, or bok choy, though if you’re using a heartier green, you’ll want to blanch it first.
Cook the noodles per the box instructions. Drain and then add in your greens to partially wilt. Then add one tablespoon of the compound butter per serving and mix well.
If you want to make this a more robust meal, fry an egg to top the whole thing off with. You could also add grated Parmesan at this point or a bit of diced green onion. It’s endlessly reworkable. This final version was served with a duck egg, sesame seeds, and garlic chili oil.
Mix all of your ingredients together gently until the butter is melted. Then eat while warm. You’re going to love it.