The cream is a thick layer of fat that curdles up on top of milk which is left to stand for a little while. It is usually pale yellow.
The cream has a delectable taste and is often used for various culinary purposes. This cream though is high in its fat content, and yet it has its share of benefits for our body. The cream whips on the basis of the amount of butterfat contained in it. The fat content thus also lays the foundation for classification of cream. Here, we’ve listed the various types of cream.
The Many Types of Cream Known to us are:
• Single Cream
Cream with only 18-20% of milk fat. It has been used traditionally for pouring over various delicacies to enrich their taste. It does not change its consistency when beaten.
• Heavy Cream or Half and Half
Heavy cream or half and half is the mix of half milk and half creme. It makes the cream much less thick in its viscosity. Thus, due to less or no thickness this cream cannot be whipped and is generally used on coffee.
• Channel Island Extra Thick Double Cream
The thick cream which is made from the milk of Jersey cows. Just like normal thick cream, it has a high-fat content of around 48% by weight.
• Extra Thick Single Cream
Single cream which homogenized to give it a rich texture of that like the double cream. It still has only 18-20% milk fat ratio to its weight.
• Light Cream
It is very similar to heavy cream. But has only 20% milk fat and thus cannot be whipped.
• Clotted Cream
The clotted cream is a luxuriously textured, extra thick cream. It has a fat content of almost half its actual weight. It is produced by the process of indirect heating resulting in clots.
• Whipping Cream
Whipping cream contains around 30-38% fat. Its volume can almost be doubled by whipping. It retains its soft texture and thus, is perfect for mousses.
It is an Italian Cream Cheese which is nothing but coagulation of cheese leaving behind the Whey by addition of lemon juice, citric acid or vinegar.
• Reduced Fat Extra Thick Cream
This thick cream has all the features of an actual thick cream but much-reduced fat, making it unsuitable for whipping and boiling. Though, the rich texture is still retained.
• Chantilly Cream
Just add a hint of Vanilla essence to whipped cream and Chantilly cream is ready.
• Double Cream
Double cream has the highest fat content. It is said to have 48% milk fat and needs no thickening agents.
• Pressure Pack Whipped Cream
When nitrous oxide gas is propelled in the cream to create pressure, so that every time we release the valve a whipped cream is directly obtained from cream with 25% milk fat, the resultant thus, obtained is called the pressure pack whipped cream.
• Clotted Cream
Unlike other creams, this cream has a caramelized flavor to it. It has high milk fat content of around 48%.
• Reduced Fat Single Cream
It has only around 12% milk fat. And is much light in its viscosity and thus is not suitable for either whipping or boiling.
• Crème Fraiche
It is also known as The chefs favorite. This crème is developed by adding lactic acid to cream and then left to develop a slightly tart, acidic and a very refined nutty flavor to it.
• Long Life Cream
To increase the shelf life of cream which has around 35% milk fat. It is passed through the high heat for short time durations to stabilize it. Long life cream is said to have undergone the Ultra Heat Treatment.
• Sour Cream
Sour cream is produced by adding some bacteria to the cream and then heating it to only about 20 degrees for a good 12 to 14 hours. This process leads to the formation of Lactic Acid which gives the sour cream its sour and tart flavor and a thick consistency.
Sour cream is also one of the healthiest creams and has a high vitamin and mineral content. Though, it has a very short shelf life of only 3 days once opened or made.
• Manufacturing Cream
It is used in professional kitchens and is not available over the counter at stores.
• Pure Cream
Unlike all other creams, this is raw cream as it is. This cream has a high-fat content of around 40% and no thickening agents, or any sort of culture are added to it.
• Canned Cream
The cream which is sterilized and contains only 21% milk fat is called canned cream as it has a long shelf life. It can be consumed whipped, as is, with desserts or ice-creams.
• Thickened Cream
Additives are added to cream to thicken its texture. It has around 35% milk fat. The additives generally used are vegetable gum, gelatin, and other modifying agents. There is another low-fat version of the thickened cream, but due to its low-fat content, the cream does not whip much.
Rich textured and delicately flavored, this smooth delicacy is not as much healthy as milk itself. It has high-fat content which if consumed in more than required amounts can lead to cholesterol and create other side effects like weight gain etc. But, there is no harm in including it once in a while in our meal portion to add some rich flavors and smooth texture.
Also, some specific cream varieties like sour creams have a nutritional value and are considered extremely healthy due to their nutritional content. Thus, we cannot generalize the fact that creams are not beneficial rather the use of these can be done in other forms as well to help our skin glow, our hair grow, etc.
Understanding the various cream types, textures and flavors make it easier for you to select the perfect variety for your use and consumption.
Lastly, a generalized trend being noticed these days is a shift towards consumption of raw milk over dairy products even though usually dairy products are considered healthy and apt for consumption.
Finally, I leave it one you to decide the right amount of cream that you can inculcate in your diet without going overboard with its quantity and yet be able to savor its amazing flavor and taste.