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Sunday Food: Clotted Cream

(Picture courtesy of enni at flickr.com.)

Being in England means being close to, and able to get, clotted cream.   I wish you all to be able to have this delicacy.

Clotted cream (sometimes called scalded, clouted, Devonshire or Cornish cream) is a thick cream made by indirectly heating full-cream cow’s milk using steam or a water bath and then leaving it in shallow pans to cool slowly. During this time, the cream content rises to the surface and forms “clots” or “clouts”.[1] It forms an essential part of a cream tea.

Although its origin is uncertain, the cream’s production is commonly associated with dairy farms in South West England and in particular the counties of Cornwall and Devon. The current largest commercial producer in the UK is Rodda’s in Redruth, Cornwall, which can produce up to 25 tons (25,000 kg; 55,000 lb) of clotted cream a day.[2] In 1998 the term Cornish clotted cream became a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) by European Union directive, as long as the milk is produced in Cornwall and the minimum fat content is 55%…. regional archaeologists [14][15] have associated the stone fogou (dial. ‘fuggy-hole’), or souterrains, found across Atlantic Britain, France and Ireland as a possible form of ‘cold store’ for dairy production of milk, cream and cheese in particular. Similar functions are ascribed the linney (dial. ‘lean-to’) stone-built form, often used as a dairy in later medieval longhouses in the same regions.[16]

(snip)

Today, there are two distinct modern methods for making clotted cream. The “Float Cream method” includes scalding a floating layer of double cream in milk (skimmed or whole) in shallow trays. To scald, the trays are heated using steam or very hot water. After the mixture has been heated for up to an hour it is slowly cooled over 12 hours or more, before the cream is separated and packaged.[5] The “Scald Cream method” is similar, but the milk layer is removed and a layer of cream which has been mechanically separated to a minimum fat level is used. This cream is then heated in a similar manner, but at a lower temperature and after a set amount of time it is then chilled and packaged.[5] In the United Kingdom the resultant cream is deemed to be equivalent to pasteurised for legal purposes. Unlike pasteurisation, however, there is no requirement for the temperatures to be recorded on thermograph charts.[28] As the temperatures are lower than used in standard pasteurisation, much care is needed in ensuring high standards of hygiene.

Now I’m going out to the store for some clotted cream.   Can’t help it.   I wish you clotted cream one of these days, but I can’t bring you back any.

Sorry.

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Ruth Calvo

Ruth Calvo

I've blogged at The Seminal for about two years, was at cabdrollery for around three. I live in N.TX., worked for Sen.Yarborough of TX after graduation from Wellesley, went on to receive award in playwriting, served on MD Arts Council after award, then managed a few campaigns in MD and served as assistant to a member of the MD House for several years, have worked in legal offices and written for magazines, now am retired but addicted to politics, and join gladly in promoting liberals and liberal policies.

  • Ruth

    good morning, pups, had the scones with some clotted cream spread on top and to me it’s just wonderful. My host here thinks having it with coffee instead of tea is terrible, but there are tastes and then there are Tastes.
    Hope you’re all having something nice happen to you today in the food experiences there.

  • joel

    There be tasty and there be yucky. Cafe con leche is tasty, tea no matter what you spike it with is yucky. I am right and anyone who disagrees is wrong. That photo looks a lot l like my get up food, thin, very eggy pancakes with mushed ripe banana and plain yogurt on top. What looks like potatoes on the side give to the dogs. Having had some clotted cream over there I can recommend it too. Culinarily happier now that fat is good, sugar bad.

  • Ruth

    Right on! and glad you’ve discovered you’re Right about everything too.
    That yoghurt isn’t loved by all is proof, underneath the skin some folks are just weird.
    Finding out that butter is good for you, the trans fats in margarine are not, is purely a treat, also.

  • joel

    They had it right in MN when I grew up. “Colored oleo” was illegal. If you wanted it yellow, the white brick had a little red button of dye in the package that you kneaded in to turn it yellow. Bootleggers smuggled in the factory yellowed from Iowa. No accounting for tastes, eh?

  • Ruth

    Making slime also only turned a profit after the 60’s when we stopped fooling ourselves, imho.
    Cheap food had to be disguised as edible, which is why as a little kid I was given margarine, called butter, at my family’s table. But I did learn to love fresh veggies from the garden, a plus. Even turnip greens. Really.

  • http://www.hudechrome.com Lawrence Hudetz

    Good morning. It’s early, not even 5AM yet, and I’m up to write my blog.

    Clotted cream . The name gives me pause. Some sort of connection to health with the word clot.

    Yoghurt sometimes comes with a layer of thick cream on it. Some version of clotted?

    Off to make some coffee and write.

    Right!

  • joel

    Also and too, there is a little blob of fat inside a chicken thigh that you don’t want to get in your mouth. I had to quit KFC when I realized I was eating it without knowing it. Having idiosyncratic food phobias shows you are a discriminating person.

  • Ruth

    Glad to see you, and good you’re up – seeing sunrise is always nice.
    The word clot isn’t great to get you to eat something, don’t you suspect it was these Brits’ idea of keeping it to themselves? They’re elitist about their stuff.
    It’s the cream that rises to the top, we were always told, so that’s your clot right there.
    Coffee? love some. The fresh brewed variety, and won’t have any until I get back.

  • Ruth

    That or that you are too special to live normally, which is what I learned I was when I didn’t clean my plate! just half kidding.

  • http://www.hudechrome.com Lawrence Hudetz

    That being the case, then obtaining whole, un-homogenized milk and skinning it off the top, as I once did when we had a dairy close by, provided the same with no processing. I loved to cook with it and gave up creamed dishes when the dairy closed. Whipping cream was a poor substitute. The cream from the whole milk was almost butter.

  • Ruth

    you gotz it right. I remember retrieving milk on my front porch that had it’s little paper top elevated up on a clot of milk cream that rose as it sat out.
    Really rich cream.

  • Alice X

    Morning all – Solstice at 12:38 EDT. I had hoped to accomplish more before we turned the corner and headed back downhill, so to speak.

    http://www.archaeoastronomy.com/2015.html

  • Ruth

    I hear from a few folks planning a solstice ceremony. This involves leaping into a volcano. Yes, mostly joking, and volcanos are picky anyway.

  • Ruth

    off to a birthday party, everyone enjoy the summer solstice, and hope you get to have clotted cream one of these days.

  • Alice X

    You are in a good neighborhood for an apropos celebration:

    Thousands gather at Stonehenge for summer solstice

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UmRwhGd3iy4

  • Beverly Lawson

    Weird My husband was of the clean-plate school; so, over-weight. Gag….

  • Canyon2

    Good morning everyone.
    Thank you for the post Ruth and Happy Father’s Day to all the fathers out there.

  • Ruth

    Thanks for dropping in, back from the party which was mostly Jamaicans, lots of good food and especially spicy jerked chicken, one happy little birthday girl and lots of cute kids plus no one got hurt. yay.

  • jane24

    Wow! So surprised to see this and thanks, Ruth. There is absolutely no substitute for clotted cream with scones and strawberry jam. I too wish all could sample.