Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > San Francisco Bay Area >
Aug 7, 2010 10:32 AM

Source Pure Buttermilk in SF City Limits ??

We can only seem to find Lowfat (1%) Buttermilk at our local Safeway and Whole Foods here in Noe Valley. Does anyone know a place where you can get the pure stuff for some comfort food home baking? No room for a cow in our yard.....

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. 1 cup whole milk, 1 tablespoon either lemon juice or vinegar, wait 5 minutes. Bake away.

    3 Replies
    1. re: wolfe

      Thanks, my wife says she has used that method and it's not the same as the pure butter milk in Ireland ....I'm surprised some purist doesn't sell it, or source it for their bakery.

      1. re: wolfe

        definitely not the same - ruined the biscuits i made

        1. re: vulber

          Did you use balsamic vinegar? That'll do it.

      2. So far as I knoew, old-fashioned buttermilk (the liquid left over from making butter, which is less than 1% fat) has not been commercially available around here since Straus stopped selling it, and that was fresh and sweet so unsuitable for use in traditional recipes where it provides the acid to trigger the baking soda.

        Buy some cream, churn the butter, and culture the remaining liquid.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Robert Lauriston

          Right, I haven't buttermaking-remnans style buttermilk in the Bay Area since I've been here, but when I have had it it has been very low fat (they want to get all that fat in the butter). However, the cultures (Lactococcus lactis, Leuconostoc mesenteroides) in cultured buttermilk can be used to culture any percentage of milk, so if you desire a higher fat version, just leave a covered jar of milk+ a couple Tb buttermilk out on the counter overnight, or until it takes on the thickened appearance of buttermilk. These are the same cultures used in creme fraiche, so using the same procedure with heavy cream.

        2. Natural buttermilk, the milk left after butter is churned is not generally available here. I don't know of any source, but someone else might. What is commercially available here is cultured buttermilk, which is made by the addition of particular bacteria to low fat milk.

          1. I have been looking for homestyle real churned buttermilk that we used to make back home. In bay area the closest you could get to this is the middle eastern style - called kefir. In SF try this store-

            1. 4th Ave Farmer's Market on Geary always has full fat Bulgarian style buttermilk as do most of the Russian shops on Geary.