If you can melt butter in a saucepan, you can make your own ghee—and flavor it, too.

Compound butters are undeniably delicious and can be found all over the food web. But Instead, I stick to adding spices and flavorings to homemade ghee. The result? A complex fat that’s perfect for making quick pan sauces, sautéing pancakes, searing steaks, and preparing virtually any dish that would normally call for butter—just durable and with a higher smoke point.

Ghee, or clarified butter, is made by straining the milk solids out of freshly browned butter. For centuries, South Asian cuisine has harnessed the full power of ghee and its tantalizing nutty notes canyonIn pots of riceand in countless dessert. But its 465°F smoke point (55 degrees higher than olive oil) and buttery flavor have made ghee popular around the world. I used to drool over the spiced ghee tadkas in my mom’s kitchen, but my obsession with compound ghee started after twice dunking grilled shrimp in a vanilla chilli ghee Masala and corn in Mexico City. The fragrant vanilla and hot chili are softened and fused by the slow boiling and sieving process of the ghee. The formula for developing a refined taste suddenly seemed all too simple; The otherwise plain shrimp needed no seasoning after a swim in an all-in-one ghee hot tub.

After I got back from Mexico City, I started infusing ghee with anything and everything. Whole garlic cloves, peppercorns, citrus peels – nothing is safe from a pot of boiling butter.

Ghee already has a deep nutty flavor in its purest form, but when infused with allium, warm spices or herbs it acquires a world of complexity for the simplest of dishes and snacks. Diversify brunch at home by frying blueberry pancakes in cardamom-spiced ghee. Not only do the pancakes benefit from the ghee’s ability to withstand the heat (no burnt butter here), but they’re infused with the most delicate cardamom flavor that won’t spoil or overwhelm your taste buds. For a quick snack, there’s a steamed sweet potato drizzled with some sage and shallot ghee. Or consider adding a few tablespoons of garam masala ghee to a bowl of creamy risotto.

Ghee is your canvas and can be painted with whatever flavors your heart desires. How to Make It: Place an assortment of spices and butter in a saucepan over medium-high heat and allow to infuse. After the butter has completely melted, stir the mixture with a whisk or wooden spoon while the butter foams and browns. As you stir, make sure the milk solids sink to the bottom of the saucepan and begin to toasting. When they turn a little golden brown and look like fine breadcrumbs in a saucepan of butter, remove the saucepan from the heat immediately. Continue stirring your compound ghee through a fine mesh strainer and strain into a jar for safekeeping.

Smoky vanilla chile ghee

1 Fresno chilli, halved
1 whole vanilla pod, seeds and pod
2 sticks of salted butter, cold
¼ tsp smoked paprika powder

Place the butter, chili, and vanilla bean in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir the butter while it melts. After 2 minutes add the smoked paprika powder and keep stirring. After another 4 to 6 minutes, or when the ghee is a deep golden hue, strain through a fine mesh strainer into a small glass jar. Seal well, store at room temperature and add a tablespoon to rice, seafood or vegetables.

Sesame Spring Onion Ghee

2 sticks of salted butter, cold
2 tbsp sesame seeds
2 spring onions, roughly chopped
1 tsp toasted sesame oil

Place the sesame seeds in a small, dry saucepan over low heat and swirl the pan to toast the sesame seeds, 3 to 4 minutes, until lightly golden brown. Add the butter, sesame oil, and scallions to the saucepan over low heat and continue to whisk the butter as it melts and begins to foam, about 6 to 8 minutes. Once the ghee is deep golden, strain it through a fine mesh strainer into a small glass jar. This ghee tastes particularly delicious on fried or steamed fish fillets.

Garam Masala Ghee

½ tbsp whole coriander seeds
½ tbsp whole cumin seeds
½ tsp whole black peppercorns
½ tsp whole cloves
1 5 cm long cinnamon stick
4 cardamom pods
2 sticks of salted butter, cold
2 small shallots, thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, crushed

In a small, dry saucepan over low heat, combine coriander, cumin, peppercorns, cloves, cinnamon stick, and cardamom. Swirl everything around in the saucepan for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the spices are noticeably more fragrant and toasty. Add the thinly sliced ​​shallots, garlic, and butter to the saucepan, still on low heat, and continue to stir the butter as it melts and begins to foam, about 6 to 8 minutes. Once the garlic starts to turn golden brown and the butter turns a more intense yellow-gold hue, remove the pan from the heat. Strain the ghee through a fine-mesh sieve into a small glass jar and store at room temperature. Use this ghee for roasted vegetables, fried chicken or anything that needs a little heat.