There are many things in life we take for granted. For example, I will eat the same beloved foods time and time again, but don’t always ask myself the question, “How is this made”? It’s an important question, and one that tends to render interesting results. I find myself seeking the answer to this question more and more often as my love for food research grows rapidly. Something fun that comes out of this is discovering just how accessible some of these made-from-scratch creations can be to the everyday home cook. One such example of this is homemade whipped cream. If making homemade whipped cream isn’t already on your radar, I think you are about to be amazed by just how easy it is to make your own whipped cream from scratch.
Homemade Whipped Cream
¾ cup heavy whipping cream
1 tsp powdered sugar
½ tsp vanilla bean paste
First, dump all of those ingredients listed above into a bowl.
Second, whip up the mixture until you reach your desired consistency. I am personally a fan of a thicker whipped cream, so I’ll take it to stiff peaks when whipping. I opted to use my stand mixer (which took about 5 minutes on a medium-high speed), but you can also use a hand mixer, or if you’re really looking for a nice arm work-out, you can whip it by hand using a whisk. If opting for the stand mixer, just be careful to not walk away from it completely, otherwise, you’ll end up with butter!
Third… well, the third step is to now enjoy, because it really is as simple as two steps to get to whipped cream heaven.
The recipe above should really be looked at more as a guideline, and not so much as precise measurements. You can really play with the heavy cream to powdered sugar ratio to accommodate your preference of sweetness level. Aside from that, there are so many possibilities of how to alter and add to your basic whipped cream to complement whatever dessert you might be pairing it with. In my batch, I opted for some Nielsen-Massey vanilla bean paste, which was ultimately paired with a silky chocolate mousse. This is something we sell at The Chopping Block, and it’s definitely one of our most popular items, especially once people get a taste of it. My personal reasons for liking the stuff is that it’s a happy medium between not having that alcohol bite that vanilla extract has and also avoiding the expense and nuisance of a fresh vanilla bean.
As I mentioned though, there are a myriad of mix-ins you can use to accommodate the flavor profile you’re shooting for. Some of these would include:
- citrus zest (orange, lemon, lime),
- extracts like almond or peppermint,
- peanut butter, and
- various alcohols (I would recommend Bailey’s or rum).
- You could even go the savory route and take out the extracts and powdered sugar, and instead whip up some goat cheese with your heavy cream.
Not only are mix-ins a way to switch up your whipped cream, but you can also look to new and interesting ways of presenting it on your plate to spice things up. A few options to amp up your presentation include doing a smear with the back of your spoon, artfully piping it with the piping tip of your choice, or making a classically shaped quenelle. In order to form a quenelle, dip a spoon it hot water, then drag it around the circular bottom of your bowl without actually touching the surface of the bowl; continue to pull back until you have formed a smooth, rounded football-like mass of cream, and then gently place on your plate.
Another dish I recently served some vanilla bean paste whipped cream with were these cinnamon caramel apple crepes.
Interested in trying out your new whipped cream garnishing skills, and thinking that crepes is right up your alley? Sign up for our Sweet & Savory Crepes class and we will teach you the art of crepe making – pair that with your newfound knowledge of whipped cream, and you will be on your way to dazzling all of your dinner guests.
To watch whipped cream made by hand, check out our Owner/Chef Shelley Young's video:
For more how to cook videos, visit our online video library.