I read about this a while back over at one of my favorite websites, Christy Jordan's Southern Plate. I thought this activity would be a good idea to keep those little hands busy for at least 20 minutes, and it did. Plus you get a bonus in the end, good ol' delicious butter!
Here's a link to the recipe on Southern Plate.
I used a pint Mason jar. Fill it about half full with heavy whipping cream. Put lid on the jar. Let the kids start shaking. After about 15 to 20 minutes or less you'll have something that looks kind of like this:
The liquid in the jar will gradually start to thicken, and then just when you think you can't shake it anymore and you think there's no liquid left, the contents will start pulling away from the sides and you'll be able to see inside the jar and you'll see something that looks like what's pictured above - a ball of butter sitting in white liquid.
Next, pour contents of jar into colander and strain.
I put the butter in a small glass dish and then added just a tiny bit of salt. You'll want to be very careful about how much salt you add - believe me, I speak from experience. The first time we made this, we put way, way, way too much salt. This time we just put a couple of small shakes of salt and it turned out perfect.
Next time you're at the store, pick up some heavy whipping cream and have your kiddos make this. Spread the finished product on some bread and watch your little one's chest stick out with pride. It's a win-win for everybody!