Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Creme Fraiche - Make your own

Don't you hate it when a recipe calls for creme fraiche and you go to the grocery store and wander aimlessly trying to find it. Is it with the sour cream? Is it by the cheese? Maybe it's by the yogurt.

And then you find a teeny container that seems to cost an awful lot.

Once you realize how easy it is to make your own, you'll probably never buy it again.

Creme Fraiche

1/4 cup buttermilk
1 3/4 cups cream

Combine the milk and buttermilk. Stir to combine. I usually do this in a pint jar and start with the buttermilk and add the cream until it hits the pint mark. Oh, and make sure your buttermilk has active cultures. I think all of them do, but I figured I'd mention it just in case ...

Now comes the difficult part. Cover the jar (or wherever you've done the mixing) and let it sit on your counter - yes, at room temperature - overnight. Like, 8-10 hours. Overnight is a good idea because if you're sleeping you won't be poking your finger in it and wondering if it's okay or if milk on the counter overnight is a bad idea.

The next morning, refrigerate it. There you have it. Creme fraiche.

Whenever I have cream - heavy cream, whipping cream, whatever - left over from a recipe, I like to make some creme fraiche, even if I don't have a recipe planned for it. I can always find a use for it, even if it's just putting a little dollop on some berries.

But here's the thing. The creme fraiche will stay good longer than the cream it was made from. So it gives you a little extra time to figure out what you're going to do with it.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

-And the stuff is very stable, so keeping a pint alive for a while is not a bit deal. Mine's been active for >2 years, began with (active) commercial yogurt. I use local, raw cream. when the C.F. gets a little low, I order a new pint of top cream, about $5.50/$6. I age it for a day, mix in the remaining C.F. from the last batch and let the works sit at room temp for ~24 hours, then back to the fridge. I've kept it for up to 6 weeks without a problem, but I would not recommend that length to others. Three-four is better. C.F. is a good thing. When regularly available, we find mor ways to use it. Great post, Donna. -C.

Cedarglen said...

Old post/New comment. I too enjoy C.F. and often make it from leftover cream, H&H and even whole milk. I give it 24 hours in the dough proof box @83F. I've never had it go 'bad.' Over time I've learned that the longer fermentation helps to give the lower fat creams and whole milk a smoother texture; they can be a bit grainy at only 8-10 hours. As you note, there is always a good use for the stuff.

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