DIY Crème Fraîche
True crème fraîche is a type of cultured cream; it was originally made in France by allowing raw (unpasteurized/unhomogenized) cream to ferment and thicken with the help of naturally occurring bacteria. This isn’t something most people can successfully do at home, but a great crème fraîche stand-in (I am calling it diy crème fraîche) can be made at home with store-bought cream and buttermilk.
2 cups heavy cream
2 tablespoons of cultured buttermilk (don’t use real buttermilk, as in the by-product of making butter, because it is not cultured)
1. Pour a scant 2 cups of heavy cream into a clean glass jar.
2. Mix in 2 tablespoons of cultured buttermilk.
3. Cover the jar and allow it to sit while the cream thickens. If your kitchen is warm, it may only take 12 hours for this to happen. If the ambient temperature is cool, however, it may take a whole day or two (or even a little more). It took 2 1/2 days in my kitchen last week. Some recipes call for heating the cream before you add the buttermilk, and this is said to enhance the culturing. I personally don’t always do this, but might try it next time and see if it speeds the process.
4. When I am making DIY crème fraîche, I remove the lid and check the progress of the culture approximately every 6 hours after the initial 12 hours. On occasion I have left it a bit too long, and a slight “off” odor was apparent when the cream thickened. When this happened, I just scooped off and discarded the very top layer and all was well underneath.
Via Los Angeles’ April Food Blogger, Winnie Abramson of Healthy Green Kitchen
Winnie Abramson launched Healthy Green Kitchen in 2009. It is where she shares her passion for home cooking, holistic nutrition, and green living. She enjoys sharing her favorite healthy, seasonal recipes on the blog, as well as her adventures in organic gardening, backyard chickens, and beekeeping. Being a busy woman, most of her recipes can be made in less than half an hour. Winnie lives in NY’s Hudson Valley with her husband and two kids, plus her dogs, cats, turtles, chickens and honeybees.