Everyone that cooks has had that moment when you are making a dish and realize that you don't have one of the ingredients. You have two choices: pack yourself off to the store and get it (not a great choice for me as the closest grocery store is at least 10 miles away) or you can try to make due with a substitute, not knowing how it will make your dish turn out or taste. Neither solution is ideal. What if I told you that sometimes there is a third option?
That third option is to make it yourself. We have actually made quite a few posts on this blog on making items from scratch. Here are a few:
So today I have decided to add a couple more items to that list. The biggest reason for this is that I have a hard time keeping sour cream and buttermilk in the fridge on a regular basis. To be honest, I just don't use either of them that often, so when I buy them they usually spoil before the containers are empty. I hate when that happens! So I learned how to make them, so I can do that, when I need them for a recipe.
- 1 cup half and half (use heavy cream if you prefer thick sour cream)
- 3 tablespoons of buttermilk
Stir the two together and pour into a mason jar
Drape a paper towel or thick weave cotton over the top
Screw on the ring only and leave it on the counter at room temperature for 36 to 48 hours
I know what you are saying: The cream will spoil if you leave it unrefrigerated! Normally you would be right, but in this case, the acid in the buttermilk will stop any bateria from forming and causing the cream to spoil. However, once you get the sour cream the consistency you want, you should put it in the refrigerator, to stop the processing. I warn you, though, since it has no preservatives, it will only last for about a week in the refrigerator before it will spoil for real!
Mix the ingredients together and set out on the counter for about 10 minutes until it thickens a bit.
It is ready to use.
It is not identical to the store bought kind but it is very close and in cooking it works exactly the same. Buttermilk is just milk that is slightly fermented. It will keep in the fridge for about a week.