“Say Cheese!” Butter Making inside an Italian Latteria

I am so excited to be sharing this!

A few days ago I met Mr Luigino again, “Il Casaro”, the dairy man and I spent a morning with him in the “latteria”, the dairy of the local village, watching how cheese, cream, butter and ricotta are made using traditional methods.

It was the first time I could actually go inside a local village dairy and see every step of cheese making, it was absolutely fascinating! And the best bit is when you taste the fresh product; freshly made butter and cream are just incredible..not to mention the ricotta.. they have such a deep almost breathtaking flavour.


Latterie are unfortunately slowly disappearing. Up to 30 years ago every village used to have one. Now very few have. Latterie produce what these days we call “slow food”. Cheese and other dairy products are made using traditional and slow methods and they are then sold to the local people of the village and towns nearby, sometimes to shops.

Because of this they will never make large profits and their purpose is to offer the community high quality food,  which is not mass produced and most importantly at zero miles.

Big industries produce large amounts of cheese and dairy products and as their only goal is to make a profit they often exploit animals to produce large amounts of milk very quickly; when profit is the only goal there is often an impact on the taste and the quality of the end product too. Latterie make cheese by collecting the milk from family run farms around them. They use slow and traditional methods and much of the work is done by hand.

Wherever you live I believe we should all, for as much as we can afford it, help in supporting local farms and learn to appreciate and understand good quality food again. This seems to have been lost in the last decades.

On this post I will be showing you what I have learnt about butter making and over the next few days it will be ricotta and then cheese.

Butter can be made in two different ways: by natural surface or by centrifugation of the milk. In the majority of latterie centrifugation is used.

We start off with fresh cream. The heated milk is extracted from the large pan

sucking milk

the cream is separated using centrifugal force through a very powerful machine that spins at an incredible 7000 rpm per minute.

fresh cream

If we disassemble the machine we can see it is made of many cylinders one on top of each other which spin very quickly and allow the separation of the cream separating the fat globules from the rest of the milk suspension and various impurities.

separator machine pieces

The cream is left overnight and the following morning it is beaten vigorously in a churning cylinder which thickens it up and transforms it into butter.

butter making

Butter is then shaped using this traditional wooden butter maker

traditional butter maker

It is pressed in


pressing butter

butter in mould

It is levelled and cut

levelling butter

And done! The butter we love is ready!

fresh butter

It then needs to be packaged

wrapping butter

And sealed

sealing paper

What a cute looking label 🙂

packaged butter

Fabulous work guys! Please let me come to help and not just watch next time! I would enjoy this!

the casari

And next time I will show you how ricotta is made!

A huge thanks for time, enthusiasm and generosity goes to:

Latteria di Turrida

Via Montello, 7
33039 Turrida di Sedegliano (UD) -Italy


7 thoughts on ““Say Cheese!” Butter Making inside an Italian Latteria

  1. Dear Alida,
    I love all of your posts and recipes, but I absolutely love when you travel or what I call (out of the kitchen). It is so amazing to learn about other ways and cultures. This must have been a fun and interesting experience. I would have loved to be there to see this procedure on how butter is made. We take it for granted, when we go to the store..we just pick up a pound of butter and don’t even think about it. The work that goes into making this delicious product. I also love the fact that the “latteria”, is in the local village and doesn’t want to be involved in mass production. Looking forward to your next part of your venture, how Ricotta is made! Thank you for sharing…
    Dottie 🙂


  2. Hi Alida:)
    How fascinating:) We are very fortunate here in central Pennsylvania. There are many dairy farms, although not as many as there use to be, and they still produce butter and cheese the “old-fashioned” way. Unfortunately, they don’t make ricotta as far as I know.

    There is a huge difference in taste when these products are freshly made. Thank goodness we are able to buy them at the local farm stands or at some of the Amish homes.

    Thank you so much for sharing your visit with us Alida. Such fun!


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