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La Crème Chantilly- A Whipped Creamy Affair

I have been to Chantilly, a suburban city to the North of Paris, quite a few times. I have visited it with friends, admired its castle, the stables, the racecourse and have sampled La Crème Chantilly- right where it belongs! I did not know till my first visit that the famous Crème Chantilly derives its name from here. For those who might like to try their hand at recreating the Crème Chantilly at their home, here's this easy recipe just right for that summer Strawberries and cream afternoon! 

 

What will you need:

  • 5 Tablespoons of thick Fresh Cream(more than 30% fat)
  • 100 ml full cream milk (3.4 fl oz)
  • 2 Tablespoons of Icing Sugar
  • Vanilla or any other natural essence (optional)

Directions to follow:

  1. Put the cream and the milk in a big salad bowl.
  2. Place the bowl in the refrigerator along with the whisk at least half an hour before preparing.
  3. Once the ingredients and the utensils are cold enough, remove from the refrigerator.
  4. Add Icing sugar and the essence.
  5. Start whisking the cream in rotating movements. This incorporates the air in the cream.
  6. Continue till the cream starts to stick to the whisk (usually in 5 minutes). Check by incorporating a spoon. If the cream sticks to it and does not fall, the cream is ready!
  7. Sugar and essence can be added before whisking or after the whipped cream is obtained. If you choose to add them after, incorporate them delicately by rotating the whisk in the same movement as before.

    Whipped Cream is ready and can be used to decorate cakes, coffee etc. or to be enjoyed with strawberries!

Nice to know:

  1. Skimmed milk or low fat creams are not suitable for preparing whipped cream. Fat droplets in the thick cream captures the air bubbles that provide for the volume of the whipped cream.
  2. Using a manual whisk ensures a better whipped cream compared to the electrical whisk.
  3. Holding the salad bowl in a tilted position allows more 'elbow-room' for whisking.
  4. Powdered sugar is easily incorporated in the cream and does not produce a grainy texture in the final whipped cream.
  5. Ingredients for a successful whipped cream are full, thick cream, cold utensils and icing sugar.
  6. Whisking the cream increases the volume to more than double by incorporating the air. This whipped cream will 'hold' only for a few hours under refrigerated conditions.


    Recipe of Creme Chantilly à l'ancienne
Recipe of Crème Chantilly à l'ancienne (old recipe)


Trivia:

  • The Crème Chantilly was invented by the chef François Vatel (1631- 1671) for a banquet held in the honour of the King Louis XIV at the Château de Chantilly, thus the name Crème Chantilly. The banquet was a lavish affair for over 2000 persons. Vatel was such a perfectionist at his job that he committed suicide over the late arrival of the fish he was supposed to prepare for a dish.
  • Roland Joffé honoured the chef in his mainstream film 'Vatel'. Gérard Depardieu played the role of Vatel. The movie was released in the year 2000.
  • Ready made whipped cream is available in pressurized containers and is sold at super markets. Squeezing the nozzle increases the volume by pressurized incorporation of air to the cream.
  • Pronunciation of 'Chantilly' is 'chon.tee.ee'

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An Indian day at a French racecourse