What Makes Britain's Double Cream So Rich?

Britain, famous for its puddings, baking shows, shepherd's pie, and obsession with tea, should be recognized for something else as well: its double cream. According to What's Cooking America, double cream is what Americans would consider a heavy cream, but it's even thicker! It often comes in jars and looks like almost any other heavy cream with a pale milky color, but the texture of double cream is beyond any milk product you've worked with before. 

Double cream is often used when making crème caramel or warm sauces because of its high-fat content so those recipes will be nice and thick (via Delighted Cooking). You can also use double cream to make an extra rich cheesecake, alfredo sauce, or black forest trifle, and it's perfect for whipping up a refreshing fruit parfait. Honestly, any recipe that requires heavy cream could be used with double cream. But what exactly makes double cream that much richer?

Butterfat is where it's at

Well, it all comes down to fat. Single cream contains about 20% butterfat, and double cream, naturally, has more than twice that amount. What we are used to finding in the U.S. is heavy whipping cream, which is around a third of butterfat, whereas double cream is closer to half, according to What's Cooking America. Butterfat is found in creams and is a natural source of flavor, texture, and even nutrition, and it's responsible for double cream's insanely heavy consistency.

The BBC Good Food site warns that over-whipping double cream can have some buttery results. If you are whipping your double cream, stop as soon as your mixture exhibits stiff peaks. If you continue to whip it, the mixture becomes grainy as the cream molecules start to bind and turn into butter. The same butter you want to slather your toast and oil a baking pan with. But if you are looking to experiment with making your own butter, feel free to give it a try, just don't try to frost a cake with the results.