What is the difference between Clotted Cream and Creme Fraiche?

Key Difference: The main difference between clotted cream and creme fraiche is that clotted cream is made with whole milk while creme fraiche is made with heavy cream.

Clotted cream is also thicker than creme fraiche, and it has a richer, more intense flavor.

Creme fraiche can be used in both sweet and savory dishes, while clotted cream is most commonly used as a topping for desserts.

Another important distinction is that clotted cream must be made with unpasteurized milk, while creme fraiche can be made with either pasteurized or unpasteurized milk.

They also differ in their production methods. Clotted cream is made by heating whole milk until it thickens and forms clumps.

On the other hand, Creme fraiche is made by culturing heavy cream with bacteria that produce lactic acid.

This process causes the cream to thicken and develop a sour flavor.

What is Clotted Cream?

Clotted cream is a thick, rich cream that is made from the milk of cows, sheep, or goats.

It is usually served as a dessert with scones or strawberries and jam. Clotted cream is high in fat and calories, but it is also high in flavor.

The history of clotted cream is a bit murky, but it is thought to have originated in Devon, England.

Farmers there would boil the milk from their cows and then let the cream rise to the top. They would skim off the cream and then let it cool.

The cream would thicken and form clots due to the high-fat content.

Production of clotted cream is still popular in Devon, and there are even festivals dedicated to the cream.

It can also be found in other parts of the United Kingdom, as well as in Ireland, France, and Scandinavia.

What is Creme Fraiche?

Creme Fraiche is a cultured milk product. It has a thick, velvety consistency and a slightly sour taste.

It can be used in place of sour cream or whipped cream in recipes.

In general, crème fraîche is made by adding a bacterial culture to heavy cream and allowing the mixture to sit at room temperature for 12–48 hours.

The result is a thick, rich, and slightly sour cream with a consistency similar to Greek yogurt.

Creme Fraiche has been used in French cuisine for centuries.

The exact origin of the dish is unknown, but it is thought to have originated in the Burgundy region of France.

Clotted Cream vs Creme Fraiche

One of the biggest differences between clotted cream and creme fraiche is their production methods.

Clotted cream is made by slowly heating unpasteurized milk until a thick layer of cream forms on the surface.

Creme fraiche, on the other hand, is made from pasteurized milk that has been cultured with bacteria to thicken it.

Clotted cream is also higher in fat and sugar than creme fraiche. Moreover, creme fraiche is tangier in flavor than clotted cream.

Main Differences

Important differences between clotted cream and creme fraiche include –

Origin

One of the main differences between clotted cream and creme fraiche is their origin. Clotted cream is a British specialty, while creme fraiche is a French one.

The history of these two dairy products is quite different. Clotted cream has been around for centuries, while creme fraiche was only invented in the 20th century.

Texture

Another difference between clotted cream and creme fraiche is their texture. Clotted cream is thick and creamy, while creme fraiche is smooth and spreadable.

This is because clotted cream is made from cream that has been heated and then slowly cooled, while creme fraiche is made from sour cream.

Flavor

Most importantly, the taste of clotted cream and creme fraiche is also different. Clotted cream is very rich and creamy, while creme fraiche is tangy and acidic.

This is because clotted cream has a high-fat content, while creme fraiche has been fermented.

Making

The way clotted cream and creme fraiche are made is also different.

Clotted cream is made by heating unpasteurized cream to a temperature of around 88 degrees Celsius.

This causes the fat to rise to the surface and form clumps, which are then removed.

On the other hand, Creme fraiche is made by culturing cream with a bacteria called Lactococcus lactis.

The temperature is then raised to about 38 degrees Celsius, which causes the bacteria to produce lactic acid.

Use

Another major difference between clotted cream and creme fraiche is their use.

Clotted cream is mainly used as a topping for desserts, while creme fraiche can be used in both sweet and savory dishes.

It is also common to use creme fraiche as a substitute for sour cream.

Cuisine

The cuisine that clotted cream and creme fraiche are used in is also different.

Clotted cream is mainly used in British cuisine, while creme fraiche is used in both French and American cuisines.

Countries that have a strong French influence, such as Canada and Mexico, also use creme fraiche in their cuisine.

Availability

The availability of clotted cream and creme fraiche is also different.

Clotted cream is mainly available in the United Kingdom, while creme fraiche is available all over the world.

This is because creme fraiche has a longer shelf life than clotted cream, so it can be exported to other countries.

Cost

The cost of clotted cream and creme fraiche is also different.

Clotted cream is more expensive than creme fraiche because it is a more artisanal product. Creme fraiche is made in large quantities, so it is much cheaper than clotted cream.

The pricing also depends on the country of origin and the brand.

One thing to note is that creme fraiche is often sold in smaller quantities than clotted cream, so the price per ounce may be higher.

The typical price range for clotted cream is $10 to $15 per 6 oz, while the price range for creme fraiche is $7 to $12 per 6 oz.

Can Creme Fraiche be substituted for clotted cream?

Yes, clotted cream can be substituted for crème fraiche in most cases. Crème Fraiche is a little thicker and has a slightly sour taste, but it will work in most recipes.

You can also make your own crème Fraiche by combining 1 cup of heavy cream and 1/4 cup of buttermilk in a blender.

Blend on low for 30 seconds, then let the mixture sit at room temperature for 12-24 hours. That’s it!

If you want a thicker crème Fraiche, you can let it sit for an additional 12-24 hours.

What is the closest thing to clotted cream?

The closest thing to clotted cream is probably crème fraîche. Because, they are both thick, creamy, and slightly sour.

However, crème fraîche is not as thick as clotted cream. The recipes also vary, but clotted cream is made with a higher fat content than crème fraîche.

So, clotted cream will be richer and creamier. Substituting crème fraîche should work in most recipes, but it may not be as thick.

If you are looking for a vegan alternative, there is a product called Tofutti that is made from tofu and it is very thick and creamy.

What can I use instead of clotted cream for scones?

You could use whipped cream, sour cream, or crème Fraiche. Scones are also delicious with jam, honey, or marmalade.

However, if you are looking for a more traditional British scone, then clotted cream is the way to go.

You can also substitute the cream with a beaten egg for a more savory scone.

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