We love whipped cream. Considering that January 5 is National Whipped Cream Day, we know we aren’t the only ones. It’s the perfect companion to ice cream, a bowl of fresh fruit or a midmorning espresso. It’s also full of potential to deliver flavor beyond vanilla.
Before we explore the options, let’s start with a basic recipe.
Simple Whipped Cream
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons powdered sugar (or to desired
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
The ingredients are straightforward enough and
will yield about two cups of whipped cream. Whether you whisk by hand or use an electric mixer, chilling the bowl as well as the beaters (or whisk) for at
least 10 minutes beforehand will help everything come together nicely.
Whip briskly, pushing air into the mixture until
soft peaks start to form. Stop then or you’ll discover you’ve churned butter.
Extracts Make it Easy
The easiest way to explore the possibilities of whipped cream is by using extracts. Instead of vanilla extract, try orange or lemon extract for a citrus punch. If you’re going to keep the vanilla extract, just make sure to adjust the quantities. Half a teaspoon of extract should be split into quarters when using two flavors.
Almond extract adds a nice nutty flavor to whipped cream, which pairs well with something like chocolate cake. It’s easy to go overboard with any extract, but this is especially true with almond. Add with extreme caution. Use half of what’s called for, give the cream a good stir and taste before whipping. Then add more if you would like.
Whipped cream is usually more of a palate-cleansing complement to stronger flavors like chocolate, however cocoa, espresso or peanut butter whipped cream is a decadent and delightful addition to any dessert.
Simply add a teaspoon of cocoa powder or instant espresso powder to the recipe above. These flavors can make things slightly bitter. So you may want to balance it out with more sugar.
For peanut butter, add an extra tablespoon of sugar to the cream and whip until it starts to thicken. Then add two tablespoons of creamy peanut butter. If you want to use peanut butter powder, add three tablespoons before whipping.
Let it Steep
Lavender, mint, or basil whipped cream can add a lovely and unique touch to your desserts. Infusing the cream with these flavors takes a bit of time and care, but it’s worth it in the end.
Start with a saucepan or small pot. Pour in the cream and slowly bring it up to medium heat. Add the aromatic of your choosing. Let the mixture remain on the heat for 15 minutes, stirring every couple of minutes to keep the cream from burning.
Remove the pot from the heat, cover, and let stand for about an hour or until it’s room temperature. Strain the herbs or flowers from cream and chill the cream in the fridge overnight. In the morning, you can add sugar and whip.
Use a half cup of loosely packed fresh basil or mint in one cup of cream. Some may wonder at the inclusion of basil for a sweet dish. As a cousin to mint, basil can do anything mint can do. We highly recommend a dollop of basil-infused whipped cream with pineapple sorbet or on top of balsamic-marinated strawberries.
Like the almond extract, lavender requires a lighter touch. Too much can taste like soap. Limit it to a teaspoon of dried lavender per cup of cream. You can always add more later.
Tips and Tricks to Stabilize Whipped Cream
Homemade whipped cream has no equal, but you will have to find a way to keep it from melting if it’s not consumed quickly. Even kept in the fridge, a basic whipped cream recipe will deflate or weep sooner than you would hope.
The good news is that you can avoid the liquidy, clumpy mess, and there are several solutions to choose from.
For one cup of cream, you can add either a teaspoon of prepared gelatin or a half teaspoon of cornstarch. You can also try a half a teaspoon of cream of tartar. If your palate is delighted by cream cheese, add two ounces per cup of cream. The slight tang goes especially well with desserts like pumpkin pie or as a light frosting for chocolate cupcakes.
Are you ready to whip it? Doris has everything you need to take your whipped cream to the next level.