Tag Archives: sweet

Homemade Crème Fraîche??!!

19 May

(how to make homemade crème fraîche you will eat with a spoon, plus suggested uses and recipes)

CremeFraiche

homemade crème fraîche

I can’t believe I’ve been cooking for years and didn’t know I could make crème fraîche at home with 90 seconds of prep. Well. Now I’m making it at least once a week, if not more, using this incredibly delicious and decadent ‘soured cream’ on everything. 

Less tart and much creamier than sour cream, I’ve used store bought crème fraîche for years. It’s terrific in soup and stews, wonderful on eggs, a better way to make creamy salad dressings, and is the perfect foil for both sweet and spicy dishes: it brings a slight tartness to a sweet dessert, adding depth and balance (how ‘chef’ does that sound!) and tempers a spicy dish, such as my skillet chilaquiles. 

Trust me… give this a try and you will ever after always have a jar of homemade crème fraîche in your fridge. The uses are near innumerable. 

INGREDIENTS

2 cups heavy cream

3 T buttermilk

DIRECTIONS

Mix the heavy cream and buttermilk in a glass jar (mason jars are perfect.)

Cover with cheese cloth or a kitchen towel (the material needs to be breathable) and secure with a rubber band or mason jar lid-band (another easy aspect to using a mason jar.)

Let the jar sit at room temperature for 24 hours. Uncover, stir and stick in the fridge. (Be sure to lick the spoon or knife, damn.)

SUGGESTED USES

–  Any dessert you make? Either spread a swath of crème fraîche on the plate, putting the dessert on top, or simply dollop on top of the dessert. I like this better than ice cream on many desserts, such as pie or cobbler, as it tempers the sweetness and adds a richness and texture ice cream doesn’t have.

– Make my homemade vinaigrette (easy!), add a few dollops of crème fraîche and some more thyme and you have a lovely ranch. I like it more liquidy but you can add enough crème fraîche to make a thick ranch.

– You all know my obsession with eggs. There isn’t an egg dish you could make that can’t use a little crème fraîche on top. My baked omelet for instance. Or, as mentioned, on top of my skillet chilaquiles

– Make my pan sauce for any main course. Add a couple of spoonfuls of crème fraîche at the end to make a creamy version of this sauce. Genius.

– Simply dollop on top of fresh berries, with some mint.

– For another wonderful salad dressing, combine a few tablespoons of chopped preserved lemons (you really should be making these, so easy and so useful), some of the ‘goop’ from the preserved lemons jar, half a cup of crème fraîche, a few shakes of red wine or sherry vinegar, thyme, salt and pepper and you have an incredible salad dressing, perfect on butter lettuce (but any lettuce will do.)

Skillet Chilaquiles2

skillet chilaquiles with crème fraîche

Do you like crème fraîche? How do you use it? Let us know!

 

A Tale of Two Spaghettis

3 Aug

While we had a wonderful marinara recipe last week, care of my good friend David,  can you really have too much spaghetti? I think not. Few things are as enjoyable to me as a great bowl of pasta, and cooking it can be just as wonderful. For instance, check out one of my favorite ‘food and film’ clips from ‘The Godfather’, with Clemenza making his spaghetti sauce:

Life doesn’t get much better, even for a Mafioso. And so, this week, I give you

‘A Tale of Two Spaghettis’

I grew up in a neighborhood that seems rare today. Everyone knew, well, everyone. While we weren’t so traditional as to have sidewalks, we had big wide streets on which to ride bikes and run. There were kids of all age groups so it seemed for each person there was almost always some else with whom to play. Part of the intimacy of our particular neighborhood stemmed from it being relatively small. It was also slightly isolated in a weird way. We were buttressed on one side by a 4-lane highway, on the other by a deep cement drainage ditch followed by a wide reservoir that led to one of the local refineries. From the perspective of today’s parents, both sides of the neighborhood must seem a terrible danger… and I guess they were. As a kid, though, both sides were a thrill.

Click here to continue reading and get the recipes