26 July 2012

Crème Fraîche

Yes, it's been forever.  I've been posting a few things on Facebook that I realized this morning I could post here and then share on Facebook, so that's what I'll be trying to do from here on out.

For those of you who don't know what crème fraîche is, you're in for a treat!  It's a gently soured cream, not as tangy as sour cream but very smooth and very French.  In my efforts to increase the healthy fats in my diet, I've been adding a couple dollops to my scrambled eggs each morning.  Wow!

I've made crème fraîche in the past by adding a tablespoon or two of cultured buttermilk to a quart of cream and letting it sit out overnight.  The rest of the buttermilk was then used for baking.  But I'm not really baking anymore (both in avoidance of grains and in avoidance of adding extra heat to our hot afternoon house).  I bought some crème fraîche from the gourmet grocery store last week (cha-ching!).  I was almost out and I thought I'd give something a try ("I tell you, LaFou, I've been thinking." "A dangerous pasttime." "I know.").

I added a couple large dollops of crème fraîche to a pint of cream and let it sit on a kitchen counter in a mason jar for 24 hours.  It thickened up nicely, but didn't smell quite tangy enough this morning, so I let it go another 12.  I still have to decide if I'll put it into the fridge tonight or tomorrow morning, but it's smelling pretty good right now.  Even though it wasn't quite done, I used a little in my eggs this morning and it tasted great.

I'm not sure how long I'll be able to keep this up.  Hmmm…maybe if I store a couple spoonfuls in the freezer, I can use that to start my next batch, the way I keep a small jar of yogurt in the freezer as starter?  I guess I'll find out!

I've also been making water kefir - just started this week, but that's a post for another day!