Crème Fraîche

James Beard

Author and Educator

Although crème fraîche, the French version of heavy cream, is increasingly easy to find in our markets, it is fun and rewarding—not to mention less expensive—to make your own.


  • 1 pint heavy whipping cream
  • 5 tablespoons buttermilk


Place cream and buttermilk in a screw-topped jar and shake it steadily, as if you were shaking a cocktail, for a full minute. Let it stand at room temperature for 5 or 6 hours, until the buttermilk has clotted the cream to a thick, rich texture. Refrigerate.


1 pint