Hints from Heloise: Is unsalted or salted butter best?

Dear Heloise >> My husband and I are having a debate over which is better to use: unsalted butter or salted butter. I like to buy unsalted butter and keep it in a butter dish I got in England where you can put the butter in and fill the dish with water, then place the cover over the butter and water. No need to refrigerate it this way. My husband said we should be using salted butter, and he believes we should always place it in the refrigerator. What do you say?

— Cathy B., Lima, Ohio

Dear Cathy >> Salt is a preservative and keeps butter fresher than unsalted butter for a longer period of time. The U.S. Department of Agriculture recommends using refrigeration when storing butter. If you decide to use unsalted butter in a European butter dish, change the water at least once a week and store in a cool place. If it smells different or slightly off, it may have spoiled, and then out it goes.

Dear Heloise >> I read your column all the time and have enjoyed it for years. I always enjoyed your Creole Roast recipe, but after we moved to our condo, I couldn’t find the recipe and would really appreciate it if you would reprint it for me and others who like a little zest in their meals. Since my son and his family are coming for Christmas, I want to make this dish for them.

— Linda M., Miami

Dear Linda >> Here is my recipe for a Creole Roast:


2 to 2 1/2 pounds beef tenderloin

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon snipped parsley, or 1/2 to 1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/4 teaspoon celery seed

1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper

1/8 teaspoon onion powder

1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

1/8 teaspoon ground cloves


Trim off excess fat and rub meat with Worcestershire sauce. Combine the parsley, salt, pepper, celery seed, red pepper, onion powder, garlic powder and ground cloves. Then, sprinkle this mixture over the meat and rub in. Cover roast and let stand at room temperature for 1 hour, or overnight in the refrigerator.

In a covered grill, arrange preheated coals around a drip pan; test for medium heat above the pan. Insert a meat thermometer near the center of the roast and place on a grill rack over the drip pan, but not over the coals.

Lower hood and grill until thermometer registers 140 degrees Fahrenheit for rare (about 45minutes), 160 degrees F for medium (about 55 minutes) and 170 degrees F for well done (about 1 hour).

If you like this recipe, you can find it and similar dishes in my “Heloise’s Main Dishes and More.” To receive a copy, just go to Heloise.com, or send $3 along with a stamped, self-addressed, long envelope to: Heloise/Main Dishes, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX78279-5001.

Write to Heloise

P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000

Fax: 210-HELOISE

Email: Heloise@Heloise.com

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