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How to make Creme Fraiche from Scratch

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The European cuisine is using a special milk ingredient for desserts, sauces and in baking that is called “Creme Fraiche”. Learn today how to make creme fraiche at home. It is not available in all American super markets.

What is Creme Fraiche?

It means “fresh cream” and it comes from France. There the used cream is unpasteurized and is producing a velvet textured cream that has a tarty and nutty flavor. It is a soured cream containing about 28% butterfat.

Creme Fraiche Scratch

In international cooking you would need for many recipes some creme fraiche, especially for cakes and desserts. If your super market does not carry this ingredient, you can make it at home. It is not difficult at all.

How to Make Creme Fraiche

Variation I
– Take 2 cups heavy cream and mix it with 2 tablespoons sour cream. Mix it very well.
– Keep it in a glass bowl or jar on the kitchen counter top overnight, then refrigerate it at least 4 hours before using.

TIPS

Use pasteurized cream, not ultra-pasteurized.
You can also use buttermilk instead of sour cream.

Why should it stay over night on the counter top?
The live bacteria in the sour cream or buttermilk, are acting as fermenting agents, that multiply and protect the cream. The cream needs to be thick. If it is not thick enough leave it on the counter top as long as 28 hours. It needs to be thick like whipped cream.
When the cream is thick enough refrigerate it.

The cream keeps for a couple of weeks in the fridge. It is a good substitute for the sometime expensive English or French creme fraiche that can be found only in delicatessen stores or in California at Trader Joes and Wholefoods.

Substitutes
– Crema Mexicana from your Hispanic produce store. It is thicker than sour cream.

– Not ultra-pasteurized cream. But you would need some spoonfuls of cream fraiche to get it started. Mix it with cream and keep it in a covered jar on the counter top until it thickens. It can take 24-36 hours.

– Philadelphia cooking cream does not work as it is spiced.

Variation II

1 tbsp sugar
1 dash salt
1 cup sour cream
½ cup whipping cream

Sprinkle sugar and salt over sour cream. Let stand 2 minutes. Gradually fold in whipping cream, 1 tablespoon at at time. Cover and chill well.

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