Friday, 28 October 2016

Cream Tea

Just booked a cream tea at Grimsdyke Hotel for this afternoon, and it got me thinking about cream.

In America they always ask if you want cream in your coffee: but I am never sure what they mean by cream. If by cream they mean milk at around 2 % milk fat, then yes, that is what I want in my white coffee. But it seems that sometimes they are actually using cream, judging by the fatty texture of the resultant coffee.  And I have been in many places when the request for a white coffee is meant by a blank stare. I have taken to asking for coffee with milk, with a shift to a short black/espresso when I am on the Continent, where a good non-frothy milk coffee so beloved in New Zealand is impossible to find.

A cream tea in UK is what we would call a Devonshire tea in New Zealand, although in NZ the cream has lost all connection with Devon, and isn’t even clotted. More details and pics after my cream tea today.

I remember my grandmother making her own clotted cream at home, using commercial milk and cream. It wasn’t til much later that I realise that she probably learnt to do this from her maternal grandmother, Emily Rowe (b. 1849) who was originally from Cornwall, next door county to Devon, and also famous for its dairy produce. The brand available here in UK is Rodda, which seems to be a Cornish surname judging from my family tree.

Commercial cream on this side of the world is confusing… in the UK shops you can buy single, double, whipping, extra thick double and of course clotted. That’s without going into the cultured types such as crème fraiche. In France I had difficulty in getting cream to whip and was told it is necessary to add a product to get it to thicken. More research needed here.

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