A topping of thick, silken crème fraîche takes a dish to the next level, whether it’s a simple baked potato or a steaming bowl of soup. With a milder flavor than sour cream, crème fraîche is tangy with a hint of nuttiness — and though it can be difficult to find in stores, it’s easy to make at home.
Try the recipe below and add a dollop of crème fraîche to savory pancakes, salmon, vegetable sides, open-faced sandwiches, baked goods and desserts. It will keep in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to a week, but use it within a day or two for the best flavor.
1 cup (8 oz./250 ml.) heavy cream, not ultrapasteurized
1 Tbs. buttermilk
In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the cream and buttermilk and heat to lukewarm. Do not allow the mixture to simmer.
Remove the saucepan from the heat, cover, and let stand at room temperature until thickened, 8-48 hours. The longer the mixture sits, the thicker and tangier it will become. Chill for 3-4 hours before using. Makes about 1 cup (8 fl. oz./250 ml.).
Use your homemade crème fraîche in a variety of dishes: