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haresfur

Dairy confusion in Australia

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I baked the layers (I used a sheet pan and cut each rectangle in half) the night before and kept them in the freezer following the smitten instructions. The next morning at around 7am I whipped 500ml of cream with a little vanilla (no sugar) and layered the cake with that. I kept in the freezer until just before I left at 8.15 then in the fridge at school. We have morning tea at 10am. It kept really well, BUT the only cream I now have access to is thickened cream, which has gelatine stabilisers in it, so that could be part of it.

Snadra's post from another thread reminded me that I wanted to ask about cream and other dairy products in Australia. I went looking for whipping cream and could only find various thickened cream products. My random pick didn't seem to whip very well. What should I be looking for? For that matter, I couldn't find butter milk. Is it available? Is there a functional equivalent of half and half? Any exPat or foreign cookbook user have a cheat-sheet to share?


It's almost never bad to feed someone.

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This is something I have struggled with myself! As a rule I buy 'pure cream' or 'pouring cream' in a carton to whip. It has 35% milk fat and no additives.

There is also thickened cream which comes in regular or light versions. The regular ones often have 'perfect for whipping' on the bottle. They have stabilisers added (usually halal) and pour out looking quite thick. The light versions have lower fat, and I think they are meant to be used for cooking rather than whipping. I have used thickened cream in my coffee (usually I take it black) and it seems fine, although it takes more effort to stir it in.

Light thickened usually has about 18% fat, while I think half and half has 15%. I've always avoided recipes that call for half and half, but I think you could probably get a similar effect if you use half pure cream and half full cream milk.

As for the others, some pure cream is more like double thick. It comes in a container and has 45% fat. It's nice as a scone topping or for a hot pie or dessert, but I don't have much experience with it otherwise. It's very thick and sticky, and doesn't have stabilisers in it. I've come across some labelled double thick that do have thickeners in them, but I can't remember what the fat content was.

Some links that are vaguely helpful to me (I say vaguely, because some of what they say contradicts what I see at the shops):

http://gourmettraveller.com.au/ExpertAdvice_200851_142.

http://www.dairyaustralia.com.au/Dairy-food-and-recipes/Dairy-Products/Cream/Types-of-Cream.aspx

http://aww.ninemsn.com.au/food/cookingtips/787196/the-beginners-guide-to-cream

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You can create half and half by using 50% whole milk and 50% heavy cream, hence the name.


PS: I am a guy.

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FWIW, the 'Heavy Whipping Cream' that I find quite reliable for whipping is 36% and contains mono and di-glycerides, polysorbate-10 and carageenan.

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Butter milk - I have seen it, either at Woolies or Coles, or both.

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One reason to move down to the big smoke :)

Buttermilk has a slightly sour taste. I don't think it is a simple mix of milk and cream?


There is no love more sincere than the love of food - George Bernard Shaw

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The milk and cream mix is for 'half and half', qa common light cream for sale in noth america.

I've always been able to get kbuttermilk quite easily (haven't looked here), but when I run out I thin out Greek yoghurt with some milk as a substitute.

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Maybe it was just the Woolies near my work, or maybe just me when I was looking for buttermilk. I ended up getting something called something like "extra rich milk". Not an item worth my giving up regional life since I seldom use it. :cool:

Good tip on the Greek yoghurt.


It's almost never bad to feed someone.

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Buttermilk, traditionally, is the leftovers from making cultured butter. You can make it by buying/making some creme fraiche, whipping it until the fat separates and what you have leftover is buttermilk. You could also make cheater buttermilk by either adding 1 tbsp of lemon juice to a cup whole milk or a 1:5 ratio of sour cream to skim milk.


PS: I am a guy.

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Buttermilk has a slightly sour taste. I don't think it is a simple mix of milk and cream?

No, it's produced by a culture, in the same way a yoghurt is. The suggestion to thin down yoghurt makes sense, although the flavour will be slightly different. Although 'buttermilk' was traditionally the liquid left over after making butter, all commercially sold buttermilk is now manufactured through fermentation and has nothing to do with the production of butter at all.

In Australia, it's usually sold in 600ml cartons, and as the others have noted, in amongst the specialty & flavoured milks at the supermarket. Even our local corner shop sells it, so it can't be that uncommon - but don't look for it amongst the full size cartons that hold 1 litre or more. I use it mostly in pancakes, it gives them a lovely flavour, and I have a devil's food cake recipe somewhere that uses it too. But I've never drunk it...

In regards to cream, it something I think has become more confusing recently, as local companies have adopted terms used in other countries but they've used them for different products. Until fairly recently, the only cream you'd get in an Australian supermarket was your bog standard 'thickened cream', with 35% fat and probably some gelatine. That was pretty much it, and as a kid I was often mystified by UK recipes that specified 'single cream' and 'double cream', neither of which translated directly to our 'thickened cream'. Then came 'lite cream' - which many people found out the hard way that you can't whip - and you also have your gourmet producers (such as King Island) with their delicious and decadent "pure" creams with a fat content approaching 55% (comparable to the British clotted cream). I know many people in Australia think that when a UK recipe calls for 'double cream', it's referring to the solid, high-fat "pure cream" such as the King Island product - when in actual fact the normal supermarket 'thickened cream' is more suitable. While King Island have changed the name of their product from 'double cream' to 'pure cream' to avoid this confusion, other manufacturers still continue to use the terms 'double cream' for a thick, spoonable 50%+ fat product that is nothing like the UK 'double cream'. I've also seen local companies producing products called 'single cream', 'pouring cream', and 'double cream' but they don't seem to be the same as the products in the UK either, although I could be wrong.

But basically - if you just want to whip some cream, then your standard supermarket 'thickened cream'- with 35% fat and probably some gelatine- will be best.

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In my experience with Aussie supermarket creams, there is usually a little note/picture on the package stating "for whipping" or "not suitable for whipping". That's the dummies guide, but the replies in the thread cover the more extensive explanations.


James.

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I've just come back from the supermarket and I paid special attention to the types of cream on offer. It's really a bit of a mess, because you have different local manufacturers (including Dairy Farmers, Bulla and Pauls) using the same terms for different products.

As I mentioned above, King Island Dairy produce a delicious solid cream product that is basically Australia's version of clotted cream. They used to call it 'double cream', but they changed the name to 'pure cream' to avoid confusion with the UK version of 'double cream'. But Paul's make a product called 'pure cream' which is a pouring cream, they use the term 'pure' to denote that there are no thickeners in it. So the King Island "pure cream" is a 53% solid spoonable cream, and the Paul's "pure cream" comes in a carton and is pourable. Gippsland Dairy, on the other hand, continue to use the term "double cream" for their 50%+ solid spoonable cream (ie a clotted cream analogue), while another company are using the term "double cream" for a pourable cream with 45% fat and no gelatine. And so on...

But as Broken English says - they all indicate on the label if they're suitable for whipping or not.

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I agree, read the label. It will tell you if it's suitable for whipping and/or suitable for cooking. I've never had a problem whipping cream that says it's suitable for doing so. We don't have a half and half and I am mystified by its use in our North American brethren's posts (Shalmanese above seems to have the answer having lived in both countries).


Nick Reynolds, aka "nickrey"

"The Internet is full of false information." Plato
My eG Foodblog

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I've just come back from the supermarket and I paid special attention to the types of cream on offer. It's really a bit of a mess, because you have different local manufacturers (including Dairy Farmers, Bulla and Pauls) using the same terms for different products.

Glad it isn't just me.

In my experience with Aussie supermarket creams, there is usually a little note/picture on the package stating "for whipping" or "not suitable for whipping". That's the dummies guide, but the replies in the thread cover the more extensive explanations.

So I guess I need to take my reading glasses along... :hmmm:


It's almost never bad to feed someone.

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It's also maybe a little disturbing to sort through all the different creams and find only one, maybe at most two, that are just cream. Not cream loaded up with bone goo or vegetable gums or any other things. I understand that these additives are not the devil, but maybe I just want cream.


Chris Taylor

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I've never met an animal I didn't enjoy with salt and pepper.

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