I know there have been some price spikes and "shortages" of butter over the last few years, but why do the manufacturers think they're going to get away with adding so much more water just to keep prices stable? Just charge a fair price across the board, I say,and give me real butter (guess there's not real standard? I'm just thinking of that little symbol that used to be on the packaging). Last year, my Christmas cookies were all wrong (after 35 years of making the same recipes) and then last night I made my long time recipe for Cream of Broccoli soup. When I went to make the roux, I could not get the first step, the water-boiling-away process, to end (sorry I can't think of the technical term, the first step of clarifying). I finally gave up and just dumped the flour in. And then it wouldn't seize, in a very noticable way. I swear the bar was half water at least!
I am always well stocked on loss leader priced pounds of butter, keep them in the freezer and never pay more than $2/$2.50; but I'm starting to think I'm throwing my money away on water rather than any kind of dairy product. Sigh. Gonna have to go high end for baking this season I guess, and treat it like gold. I had noticed this trend last year too, but thought it was just temporary till the price fell. I was wrong.