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Home-made whipped cream
July 31, 2016, 10:01 am

Want something better than whipped cream to top your dessert; try homemade whipped cream. Sure, the store bought variety is quick and easy to use; but nothing dresses a dessert quite like the homemade version. It is not only silkier and richer but also quite easy to prepare; however, make sure you avoid the following mistakes.

Do not start with warm cream: Remember to start with chilled dairy, as the fat globules emulsify faster and stay emulsified longer when cold. For an even more efficient whipping, start with a cold mixing bowl and cold electric-mixing attachment. Just pop them in the freezer for 10-15 minutes before starting.

Use organic cream at your discretion: Using organic ingredients will give you a white, smooth and creamy texture compared to grainy and yellow when using ultra-pasteurized dairy.

Be sure not to over or under sweeten: Whether dolloped on pie, spooned on pudding or served alongside berries, whipped cream is typically eaten with dessert. Those pies, puddings and berries are already sweet, so loading your whipped cream with tons of sugar will result in an oversweet mess. To be on the safer side, start with one tablespoon of sugar per cup of cream and increase to two if required.

Choose and incorporate your sweetener wisely: If you are using a confectioner’s (powdered) sugar in your cream, do not add it until peaks have already begun to form. Otherwise, the cornstarch used in confectioner’s sugar will not act as the needed stabilizer. You can use regular granulated sugar, but add it before you begin to beat so it can properly dissolve into the mix. If you opt for a liquid sweetener such as maple syrup, remember to use no more than two tablespoons and fold it in gently with a rubber spatula once the cream has set.

Do not over-beat the cream: Heavy cream should be approached with a lighter hand. Over-whipping your dairy will result in an unappealingly thick and dense whipped cream. The milk solids may separate, too, meaning you are halfway to butter.

One way to avoid over-beating your cream is to do it by hand, but make sure you have the right tool for the job. A large balloon whisk will properly incorporate air into the cream; if you take it too far, just add in a drizzle of un-whipped cream.

Do not be afraid to prepare in advance: You can prepare whipped cream hours in advance, erring on the side of  under-beating. Store it in the refrigerator and simply bring it back to life with a whisk, moments before serving.


Salted-Butter Apple Galette with Maple Whipped Cream

Preparation: Place a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 190 degree Celsius. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, place ¼ cup salted butter, scrape in vanilla seeds from ½ length of vanilla bean, add the pod too, and cook over medium heat, stirring often for five to eight minutes, until the butter begins to foam and then browns, but before it burns. Remove pan from heat and remove the pod.

Prepare a basic tart dough in advance by whisking one tablespoon sugar, ½ teaspoon kosher salt and one cup all-purpose flour in a medium bowl. Add six tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces and rub it in with your fingers until mixture resembles coarse meal with a few pea-size pieces remaining. Beat on large egg to blend and drizzle over butter mixture; mixing gently with fork until the dough just comes together. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth, then form into a disk shape, wrap in plastic and chill for at least two hours until firm.

Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface into a rectangle of roughly 35 x 25 cm and about 0.25cm thick. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Arrange two large apples, scrubbed and sliced to 0.25cm thick on top, overlapping and leaving a 4cm border. Brush apples with the browned butter and sprinkle about three tablespoons muscovado sugar or dark brown sugar. Lift the edges of dough over the apples, tucking and overlapping as needed to keep the rectangular shape.

Beat one large egg with one teaspoon water in a small bowl and brush the crust with egg wash. Sprinkle with one tablespoon granulated sugar and bake for about 40 to 50 minutes, rotating the sheet once. Let it cool slightly on the baking sheet before slicing.

Beat two cups heavy cream in a medium bowl to medium-soft peaks. Fold in two tablespoons pure maple syrup and serve alongside galette.

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