Most hacks for softening butter assume you’re in your home kitchen. But when you receive a bread basket with rock-solid butter packets while dining out at a restaurant, these tricks won’t do you much good. Fortunately, all you need to make uncooperative butter bend to your will is a fork and some elbow grease.
This video shared by Vala Afshar on Twitter shows a clever (and strangely satisfying) hack for dealing with tricky restaurant butter packets. If you’re unable to spread the butter without massacring your bread, try sticking the points of your fork directly through the front of the foil. Without unwrapping the packet, bend it in half and squeeze it until the contents are forced through the holes.
The strings of butter that fall onto your bread should yield easily to your knife. The process may give you flashbacks to making Play-Doh spaghetti as a kid, only this time you’re allowed to eat the final product.
Rather than softening the butter with heat, this hack makes it easier to spread by breaking it down into manageable strips. Many bakers use a similar technique by grating butter into their biscuit and pie crust doughs. Here are more culinary hacks to try around the kitchen.