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Thursday, May 20, 2010

Why Make Real Whipped Cream?

Back during the Christmas holidays we had a big family event up in Prescott Valley. I got a chance to finally meet all of Michael's brothers and sisters in person after 12 years! We had a great time with lots of food, lots of drink and lots of fun.

During all that my beautiful sister-in-law (sister-out-law?) Janis was preparing a dish that needed whipped cream. No one had gotten any Redi-Whip, Dream Whip or other store brands and everyone was at a loss. As it happened there was some heavy whipping cream in the fridge so I suggested just making some fresh whipped cream.

You'd have thought I'd suggested building a three stage rocket and flying to the moon. For some reason people have this strange idea that whipped cream is difficult. I think they often equate it with whipping egg whites (which can be tricky). In actuality, making real whipped cream is quite easy and the taste pay off is astounding. There's just no comparison between store bought "whipped toppings" and real whipped cream! It's luscious and airy with great flavor depth and enough texture to let you know that you're eating it. It's not just pretty - it's a complement to the food.

So, I told Janis how to make whipped cream and she did. They were astounded at the difference between real whipped cream and the stuff from a can (or tub). There's just no reason to skimp when making real whipped cream only takes a few minutes.

Here's what you do.

1. Start off with very cold heavy whipping cream and a chilled bowl. It's not essential to chill the bowl and you can get by without doing it, but I promise, the cream whips faster and higher with the bowl chilled!

2. Put 1-2 cups of the cream in the bowl and using a whip/whisk attachment on an electric mixer begin to whip the cream until it is frothy.

3. Add in some sugar (normally I eyeball it, but depending on your taste go from a couple tablespoons up to about 1/4 cup).

3. Whip the cream until it begins to thicken. Add in 1-2 tsp. of good quality vanilla extract and continue to whip.

4. Whip the cream on high speed until it is nice and fluffy and the peaks stand up when you lift the whisk from the bowl.

That's it! You're ready to use it on your dessert and I promise you'll tell the difference. This also works great if you place the whipped cream in a piping bag to pipe onto desserts and treats! You can also place in a container and store in the refrigerator for several days.

NOTE: The photos show only 1/4 cup of cream being whipped for demonstration purposes. If you use 1 to 2 cups you'll get quite a bit more than this! 


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