Designer butter
Monday June 25th 2012, 10:04 pm
Filed under: Family,Life

The plumber came. He looked at the job, pronounced a fair price and went to work. When he was done, he asked me to come see something. I ducked down under the sink and went Wow!

When we had redone the kitchen 17 years ago, that plumber had glued all the pieces under there together, and this guy had never seen anything quite like it–and a ring was broken.  Tilted up and high, which was good, but really obviously broken.

I told him, yeah, our contractor cut a lot of corners that we found out about later. But glued? Why? Huh.

He had that ring piece in his truck. He offered to fix it for $45, which I thought reasonable in the extreme. Done! And the fluids at the front of the fridge were 37F this morning. We have a working kitchen again!


Michelle was cleaning a cabinet and came across a butter dish that had been a wedding present ages ago in Washington DC, the surviving one; the other we were given had been (are you ready for this) platinum-edged china, I kid you not, broken in the Loma Prieta quake and long gone. The glass one, however, had made it through.

Did you know that butter quarter pound blocks sold on the East Coast are long and narrow and butter quarters sold on the West Coast are short and squat? And do not in any way fit our East Coast butter dish? I explained to her, and she told me that, Oh, you can buy butter shaped like that at Piazza’s. You’ll pay an obscene price for it, but you can get it.

Designer butter. Who knew.

(So, can I get rid of it, Mom?

Not on your life. Call it a quacamole server.)

Ed. to add–remember how I said I was really really hoping no earthquake tonight with that sink full of Drano’d water to the top? The universe laughed. We had a 3.3 at 1:13 this morning just south of San Jose. Not enough to do damage, not even enough to splash (as far as I could tell); just enough to grin mischievously back at us.

11 Comments so far
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Interesting butter shape fact. UK hunks o’butter are short and squat, too. Can you find a butter mold to reshape or is that taking things a step too far?

Comment by LynnM 06.26.12 @ 12:40 am

Here is a link to a French butter dish similar to the one I have which keeps the butter fresh and of spreading consistency without having to worry about the size of the block of butter. Glad your sink didn’t overflow!

Comment by Jody 06.26.12 @ 4:52 am

Or you can look up cheaper butter keepers on Amazon.

Comment by Jody 06.26.12 @ 4:53 am

yes, I know about that butter thing — butter that we buy here in the grocery store is that long, skinny style — what we get at Costco is the short fat style — I have two butter dishes — one each style — crazy isn’t it?

3.3 would be easy to not even notice for those of us whole lived there (as I’m sure you’ll confirm), but still — just a reminder!

Comment by Bev 06.26.12 @ 7:08 am

I use a butter bell. The shape doesn’t matter because you have to stick the thing in, then wait for it to soften enough to mash it down into the bell anyway–has water in the bottom so it stays soft but spreadable and doesn’t go rancid.

Comment by Sherry in Idaho 06.26.12 @ 7:23 am

Who knew?! Much as I love real, dairy butter, I didn’t realize there were east coast vs. west coast differences.

Comment by Channon 06.26.12 @ 8:53 am

‘quacamole?’ How about guacamole? Or does yours quack?
I didn’t feel the quake.
Glad you’ve got a good plumber.

Comment by Don Meyer 06.26.12 @ 9:24 am

I inherited a butter dish from my grandmother (back in the ’50s) which was round, with a domed lid. Unfortunately, I knocked it off its shelf one day….

Comment by Abby 06.26.12 @ 9:38 am

Do they even sell west-coast-style butter dishes? For years I bought Land-o-Lakes butter because (a) I liked it best and (b) it was still sold in East-coast-style long skinny quarters that fit my beloved Pyrex butter dish. Then they switched to the West Coast “stubby,” the price of butter went through the roof, and the Pyrex butter dish fell out of the refrigerator. So I hounded eBay till I found a stainless steel butter dish that can accommodate either “skinny’ or “stubby” butter sticks, and I started buying whatever butter was on sale. I won’t say there’s no difference, but it’s nothing I can’t live with.

FWIW, you can usually get butter in skinny quarters at Trader Joe’s.

Comment by Virginia 06.26.12 @ 10:16 am

Darlin’ I’m on the west coast and buy sticks of butter that are long and narrow. The length of the box and then 4 across. I can send you some pretty cheap – it’s usually $2.50/box at safeway.

Sorry about the kitchen, glad it’s coming back together. At least the earthquate wasn’t too strong. g

Comment by gMarie 06.26.12 @ 12:02 pm

We have a Butter Girl for our sweet corn. And really, butter designed to put on sweet corn is some of the best there is.

Comment by twinsetellen 06.26.12 @ 8:46 pm

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