Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Adventures in Butterbeer

You guys know Jimmy Wong, right? He's this total YouTube sensation with a ton of awesome music videos. I've been a fan ever since he made that hilarious and super catchy song about Alexandra Wallace. (Remember her? Asians on cell phones in the library? Yeah, her.)

Well, Jimmy Wong has a new venture: Feast of Fiction, a video series that aims to recreate recipes from games, books, and so on. One of his first videos will be of particular interest to librarians and kidlit fans: three versions of BUTTERBEER!

Like most youth services librarians, I harbor a certain amount of love for the Harry Potter books. In fact (um, should I admit this?), I have a Gryffindor costume I bought for a Harry Potter party I hosted at the library to celebrate the Deathly Hallows release. I trot it out every so often on Halloween.

So of course I had to try the butterbeer!

I love heavy whipping cream, so I had the most fun making the butterbeer foam. I cut the recommended sugar by half, and it was perfect for me. Depending on your sweet tooth, you might want to proceed cautiously with the sugar and add in more to taste as you go. The plentiful amount of vanilla gives it a nice kick. The recipe as stated in the video makes a very generous amount of foam, so if it's just you and a friend, you can adjust the recipe accordingly.

Of course, I didn't mind having extra, because it's DELICIOUS.

Now, onto the results of the recipes...

The cold version is super simple to make. The foam is what really takes this drink to a whole new level of awesome. I've made butterbeer before (as a refreshment for the aforementioned library Harry Potter party), but I never thought of adding whipped cream foam. Genius!

The blended version allows for copious amounts of that oh-so-good foam, and would be a refreshing treat on a hot summer afternoon.

The hot version is the ultimate comfort beverage on a chilly evening. It's mild and quite sweet. Since this is a hot drink, the whipped cream foam sinks in as it melts, making the end result all the more delectable. As suggested in the video, rum would indeed be a nice addition to this recipe for the adults among us!

Having tried all three recipes, I'm with Jimmy-- the hot version is my personal favorite. The blended version is excellent for those who like frappuccino type drinks. But the simple cold version impresses me the most as the drink I picture from the Harry Potter books, both in taste and appearance. Perfection!

Thank you to Jimmy Wong and friends for these "magical" recipes. Cheers!


  1. These look just awful to me. ;-) But they also look like a lot fun, and I admire you for trying all three. Sounds like a great party to me.

  2. This is so fun! I love it when recipes come from books, and I was always curious about what butterbeer would taste like. I'm going to make some with my little niece who is a big HP fan!

  3. DROOLING! Butterbeer is definitely something I've been wanting to attempt for a while now.

  4. Thanks for the comments, all!

    C.B., to each their own, huh? :) But yes, these beverages were very fun to make!

    Katie, I LOVE food from books too. These recipes should be fun to make with your niece- they're really quick and simple!

    Beth, these variations on butterbeer were so much fun. I foresee enjoying the hot version on many a cold night this winter!

    Jessica, hee! Totally. We watch his videos all the time in our house- the three year old knows him by name. :D


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