What is Devonshire Cream (aka Clotted Cream)?

What is Devonshire Cream (aka Clotted Cream)? - Cheese Origin

Welcome to a delightful journey into the heart of English culinary tradition. Today, we unravel the mystery and charm of one of England’s most beloved dairy delights – Devonshire Cream. Often referred to as Clotted Cream, this rich, indulgent treat has been gracing the tables of afternoon tea lovers for centuries.

Whether spooned onto warm, freshly baked scones or used as a decadent topping for desserts, Devonshire Cream is a taste of English heritage that is as luxurious as it is delicious.

Quick Facts About Devonshire Cream

Quick FactsDetails
OriginDevonshire, England
Also Known AsClotted Cream
TextureThick and creamy
TasteRich, buttery, slightly sweet
ColorPale yellow
Production ProcessTraditionally made by heating unpasteurized cow’s milk until a thick layer of cream forms on the surface. The cream is then skimmed off and cooled.
Serving SuggestionsOften served with scones and jam, part of the traditional British cream tea
Shelf LifeAbout 4-5 days in the refrigerator once opened
Nutritional InformationHigh in fat and calories
StorageMust be refrigerated
Cooking UsesCan be used in baking, sauce making, or as a topping for desserts
AvailabilityCan be found in specialty food stores and some supermarkets internationally
ProtectionsIn England, “Devonshire Cream” is a protected designation of origin – the cream must be made in Devon to use the name

What is Devonshire Cream?

What is Devonshire Cream?

Devonshire Cream, a decadent delight from the heart of England, is a culinary gem that enriches every dish it graces. Also known as Clotted Cream due to its dense, clotted texture, this cream is the epitome of indulgence in the English countryside. Its origins trace back to the pastoral beauty of Devonshire, a county known for its dairy-rich farms and lush landscapes.

The magic of Devonshire Cream lies in its unique production process. This isn’t your average cream; it’s traditionally made by gently heating unpasteurized cow’s milk until a thick layer of cream forms on the surface. This layer is then carefully skimmed off and allowed to cool, resulting in a rich, buttery cream with a slightly sweet taste that’s hard to resist.

Its luxurious texture and pale yellow hue make Devonshire Cream a sight to behold. But it’s the taste that truly sets it apart. With a richness that borders on the flavor of butter, yet with a sweetness that’s subtly reminiscent of the finest custards, Devonshire Cream is a treat for the senses.

Devonshire Cream is perhaps best known for its starring role in the traditional British cream tea. Picture this: warm, freshly baked scones, a dollop of vibrant strawberry jam, and a generous serving of thick, creamy Devonshire Cream. It’s a combination that has stood the test of time, bringing joy to afternoon tea tables across England and beyond.

However, the uses of Devonshire Cream extend far beyond just scones. It lends itself beautifully to baking, adding a touch of richness to cakes and pastries. It’s also used as a decadent topping for desserts, from pies to puddings, and even finds its way into savory dishes, adding a touch of creaminess to sauces and soups.

In England, “Devonshire Cream” is more than just a name – it’s a seal of authenticity. The cream must be made in Devon to earn the right to carry this name, ensuring that every spoonful is a true taste of this English county. So next time you see Devonshire Cream on a menu or in a store, know that it’s not just a cream, but a little piece of Devonshire’s dairy heritage.

What Does Devonshire Cream Taste Like

Devonshire Cream, also known as Clotted Cream, has a distinct, indulgent taste that sets it apart from other dairy products. It offers a rich, buttery flavor that’s slightly sweet, yet not as sweet as whipped cream or ice cream.

Its taste is somewhat akin to a cross between butter and cream, with a hint of sweetness that gives it an extra depth. The texture further enhances the taste experience – it’s incredibly thick and creamy, almost like a very soft cheese.

This unique combination of taste and texture makes Devonshire Cream a delightful treat that adds a touch of luxury to many dishes, particularly when served with scones and jam for a traditional British cream tea.

Devonshire Cream Tasting Notes

Devonshire Cream Tasting Notes
  • Texture: Devonshire Cream has a thick, creamy texture that’s similar to soft butter or cream cheese. It’s not runny like regular cream but instead holds its shape well, making it perfect for spreading on scones or dolloping onto desserts.
  • Color: The cream has a pale yellow color, which can range from almost white to a deeper yellow, depending on the specific batch and the type of milk used in its production.
  • Taste: Devonshire Cream has a rich, buttery taste with a slight sweetness. It’s less sweet than whipped cream or ice cream, but sweeter than regular butter. The taste is indulgent and luxurious, akin to a cross between butter and cream.
  • Aroma: The cream has a subtle, fresh aroma that’s reminiscent of dairy products. It doesn’t have a strong smell, but the scent complements the rich taste and texture.
  • Aftertaste: The aftertaste of Devonshire Cream is smooth and lingering, leaving a pleasant, creamy sensation on the palate. The slight sweetness remains, making it a delightful finish to any bite.
  • Pairings: Devonshire Cream pairs exceptionally well with sweet and fruity flavors. It’s traditionally served with scones and strawberry jam, but also works well with other fruit jams, honey, and even chocolate. In savory dishes, it can be used to add creaminess and richness.
  • Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel of Devonshire Cream is smooth and velvety. It coats the tongue with its richness, providing a sense of indulgence with every bite.

What is the Difference Between Devonshire Cream and Double Cream?

Devonshire Cream and Double Cream are both rich dairy products hailing from the UK, but they have distinct differences in their production process, texture, fat content, and uses.

Devonshire Cream (Clotted Cream)Double Cream
Production ProcessMade by heating unpasteurized cow’s milk until a thick layer of cream rises to the top, which is then skimmed off and cooled.Produced by separating the cream from fresh milk, often without the heating process.
TextureHas a very thick, clotted texture that holds its shape well, similar to soft butter.More liquid and pourable, though still thicker than single cream.
Fat ContentHigh-fat content, usually around 55-60%, giving it its rich, indulgent taste.Slightly lower fat content, typically around 48%.
UsesTraditionally used in British cream teas, spread on scones with strawberry jam. Can also be used as a topping for desserts.Often used in cooking, such as in sauces, soups, or whipped as a topping for desserts.
TasteSlightly sweeter, buttery taste.More neutral, creamy flavor.

>> Click here to read our in-depth guide on Double Cream

What is Devonshire Cream Made of?

  • Cow’s Milk: This is the primary and often the only ingredient in traditional Devonshire Cream. The milk used is typically full-fat, which gives the cream its rich, indulgent flavor and texture.
  • Heat: Although not an ingredient in the traditional sense, heat is a crucial component in the production of Devonshire Cream. The milk is gently heated to allow the cream to rise to the top.
  • Time: While not an ingredient per se, time is a key factor in making Devonshire Cream. After the heating process, the cream needs to be left to cool and clot, a process that can take several hours.

Note: Some commercial versions of Devonshire Cream may contain additional ingredients such as sugar or preservatives to extend shelf life, but traditional recipes consist of just milk.

How to Eat Devonshire Cream?

Devonshire Cream (aka Clotted Cream), is a versatile product that can be enjoyed in many ways.

  • Cream Tea: One of the most traditional ways to enjoy Devonshire Cream is as part of a cream tea. Spread it generously on warm scones, topped with strawberry jam.
  • Topping for Desserts: Its thick, rich texture makes it an excellent topping for a variety of desserts. Try it on pies, tarts, or fruit crumbles for an extra indulgent touch.
  • With Fresh Fruit: The slightly sweet, creamy flavor of Devonshire Cream pairs well with fresh fruits. It’s especially delicious with berries or sliced peaches.
  • In Coffee or Hot Chocolate: For a decadent twist, stir a spoonful of Devonshire Cream into your coffee or hot chocolate. It will melt into a rich, creamy froth.
  • On Pancakes or Waffles: Swap out your usual butter or whipped cream for Devonshire Cream on your pancakes or waffles. Add a drizzle of maple syrup or honey for a heavenly breakfast treat.
  • In Savory Dishes: While it’s often used in sweet contexts, Devonshire Cream can also add richness to savory dishes. Try it in soups, sauces, or risotto.

Reminder: Devonshire Cream is quite rich, so a little goes a long way! Enjoy it in moderation as part of a balanced diet.

10 Best Devonshire Cream Substitutes

SubstituteFlavor ProfileTextureBest Used In
MascarponeMild, slightly sweet flavor.Creamy, thick texture.Excellent in desserts, coffee, or spread on pastries.
Crème FraîcheSlightly tangy, rich flavor.Smooth, creamy texture.Perfect for soups, sauces, and desserts.
Whipped CreamLight, sweet flavor.Fluffy, airy texture.Ideal for topping desserts or fruit.
Cream CheeseMild, slightly tangy flavor.Thick, creamy texture.Good for spreading on bagels, pastries, or use in desserts.
Greek YogurtTangy, creamy flavor.Thick, creamy texture.Works well in dips, dressings, or as a healthier dessert topping.
Sour CreamTangy, creamy flavor.Smooth, creamy texture.Excellent for dips, baked goods, or topping savory dishes.
Ricotta CheeseMild, slightly sweet flavor.Creamy, grainy texture.Great for spreading on toast, filling pasta, or in desserts.
Double CreamRich, creamy flavor.Thick, heavy texture.Ideal for whipping, in sauces, or desserts.
Cottage CheeseMild, creamy flavor.Lumpy, creamy texture.Good for a healthier spread or in baking.
Coconut CreamSweet, coconut flavor.Creamy, thick texture.Perfect for vegan desserts, curries, or coffee.

What Pairs Well With Devonshire Cream?

What Pairs Well With Devonshire Cream?

Food that goes well with Devonshire Cream:

CategoryFood Pairings with Devonshire Cream
Bread/BiscuitsScones, English Muffins, Digestive Biscuits, Croissants
FruitsStrawberries, Raspberries, Blueberries, Blackberries
MeatsSmoked Salmon, Prosciutto, Roast Beef, Corned Beef
VegetablesRoasted Parsnips, Steamed Asparagus, Grilled Zucchini, Roasted Carrots
Nuts & SeedsAlmonds, Walnuts, Hazelnuts, Chia Seeds
Condiments & SpreadsStrawberry Jam, Raspberry Preserve, Honey, Lemon Curd
DessertsFruit Tarts, Sponge Cakes, Shortbread Cookies, Sticky Toffee Pudding
SeafoodSmoked Salmon, Lobster, King Prawns, Grilled Shrimp
Pasta & GrainsPancakes, Waffles, Porridge, Rice Pudding
Herbs & SpicesVanilla, Nutmeg, Cinnamon, Cardamom

Also read: What Fruit Goes on a Charcuterie Board?

Beverage that goes well with Devonshire Cream:

CategoryBeverage Pairings with Devonshire Cream
TeaEnglish Breakfast, Earl Grey, Assam, Darjeeling
CoffeeEspresso, Cappuccino, Latte, Mocha
WineMoscato, Sauternes, Port, Ice Wine
BeerStout, Porter, Brown Ale, Belgian Dubbel
Non-AlcoholicHot Chocolate, Apple Cider, Lemonade, Ginger Ale
CocktailsIrish Cream, White Russian, Mudslide, Brandy Alexander
SpiritsWhisky, Brandy, Bourbon, Rum

Also read: Top 10 Champagne & Cheese Pairings to Try at Least Once

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Does Devonshire cream need to be refrigerated?

Devonshire cream, also known as clotted cream, has unique storage requirements. It is shelf-stable and does not need to be refrigerated until it has been opened. Once opened, it should be kept in a sealed container in the refrigerator and typically lasts up to two weeks. However, it’s recommended to use it within a few days of opening for the best quality. If you’re dealing with homemade clotted cream, it can stay fresh for about three days in the fridge once it’s opened.

Please bear in mind that refrigerated clotted cream should return to room temperature before you try to use it. Stir it when you first open the jar after refrigeration.

2. Is Clotted Cream the same as Devonshire Cream?

Yes, Clotted Cream and Devonshire Cream are essentially the same thing. They are both thick, rich, slightly sweetened creams traditionally made in Devon, England.

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