How to Make Crème Fraîche

How to Make Crème Fraîche

Have you ever tried to buy crème fraîche in the store? in my opinion, it is not a fair price... I cannot attest to whether or not home made is better, because I've only ever had it that way!

This is by far the best kitchen tip I have ever received.

I believe that EVERYONE should have access to great ingredients, and when crème fraîche is homemade, it even becomes available to those with a low budget. It is no longer a splurge or even a special occasion ingredient. That is my favorite kind of recipe, because I myself have a low budget. I really do care about my readers quite a bit, and I do not want their circumstances to keep them from trying new things and enjoying themselves in the kitchen. Everyone who wants to learn and explore should do so! 

My heavy cream was about $2.50, and the buttermilk was $1. So, for $3.50, I get to have 16 oz. of fresh, homemade crème fraîche. That is much better than the $7-$10 8 oz. tubs I find in the grocery stores. Which, honestly, is not that much money, but as I said before, making it at home takes it from a splurge ingredient to a whenever-the-heck ingredient.

Actually, saying "fresh crème fraîche" is pretty dumb of me, because the literal definition of crème fraîche from French to English is "fresh cream"!

That is also pretty weird, though, because it is the opposite of fresh cream. The whole process involves letting cream sit out all day until it thickens. Thats actually pretty gross. Whose idea was this? Also, am I crazy for doing it too? Probably.

crème fraîche is a very popular ingredient in cooking. I spent a very VERY long time not knowing what it was, only to find out it is basically FAR superior sour cream! It is nutty, rich, and extremely versatile. You simply won't believe how delicious it is, if you haven't had it before. Also, it is better to cook with than sour cream is, because it doesn't separate or curdle! 

This is  a super fun kitchen experiment to do, because it is inexpensive, easier than falling off a log, and the results are outstanding. I really hope you give it a try soon!

Here is a list of recipes of mine you could use this in: thyme and rosemary pork chops, Tuscan chicken over couscous, Tuscan portobello mushrooms over couscous, perfect white pizza (in place of sour cream and milk).

Other ideas to use this ingredient includes: beef stroganoff, potato salad, or as a topping for fish! You can use crème fraîche in place of sour cream, mayonnaise, or even yogurt in some recipes.

Anyway, when I said this was easy, I meant it. The worst thing you could do would be forgetting about it and leaving it out for a long time. That would be really gross, so please don't do that. 

Enjoy! I promise you won't be making this just once.

Time to go impress the HECK out of your friends. You know you enjoy that, and there is no judgment for it here.

Yield: just over 2 cups (16 oz.)

total time: around 2 days

Ingredients:

  • 16 (2 cups) oz. heavy whipping cream
  • 3 tablespoons real cultured buttermilk (so no, you can't use milk and vinegar for this!)

Supplies:

  • jar (make sure it is large enough!)
  • jar lid
  • coffee filter
  • rubber band

Instructions:

 Thoroughly clean jar and sterilize, by boiling it in water for a few minutes. Repeat with lid. Remove and allow to cool to a point that you can touch it without burning yourself.

Pour in all ingredients, mix with a spoon just a little, and top with the coffee filter, and secure with your rubber band.

place in an area that ideally 70-75 degrees for 24 hours, or until it is good and thick. You will see in the photos I have included that it is stiff enough to sit up on its own at the 23-24 hour mark. If yours isn't this thick, leave it out a little longer.

At this point, remove the coffee filter and rubber band, and replace it with your lid.

Don't get excited yet. Place jar in the refrigerator for another 24 hours (I know, it's a long wait). Mine thinned a little bit in the fridge, but I like mine a little thinner anyway.

Note: There are so many variables when making your own creme fraiche that all results will vary. For instance, if yours is a little lumpy, it got too warm. It will still taste just fine, however.

After that, you are finished. NOW it's time to get excited! Enjoy all of the wonderful recipes you can use this in. The possibilities are endless. 

I would try to use this ingredient in a week or two, because I cannot guarantee it's freshness after the two week point.

Here is a pin-able photo for Pinterest: