Butter muslin is a finely-woven cloth used as a cooking tool.
It is similar to cheesecloth in usage, but not the same. It has a finer weave, like that of a pillow case. The cloth is usually unbleached.
Its purpose is to drain butter; cheesecloth’s purpose is to drain whey off the curds.
Butter muslin can be used:
- to strain liquids such as stock, or honey;
- to wrap boned poultry in to prevent its falling apart while cooking;
- to drain soft cheeses that would otherwise just pass right through regular cheese cloth with its coarser weave;
- to drain buttermilk from milk.
You can wash it and re-use it.
A cheesecloth with a very tight weave, coffee filter, a clean cotton cloth, store-bought cheesecloth folded into several layers.
Butter muslin was used in Great Britain during the Second World War as material for dresses and as a lining for clothes, owing to shortages of other materials.
In English-speaking countries, what “muslin” means varies. In the UK, some may refer to “butter muslin” as “calico” (this is not the same as American “calico” which has a printed pattern on it.)