What Is English Clotted Cream?

Clotted Cream Scones
Elaine Lemm

To the English who have a love of the traditional clotted cream, there is little doubt about what it is. But for those less used to this unique English treat, you may be surprised. Yes, it is cream, but what is the clotted bit all about?

What Is English Clotted Cream?

Clotted cream is a silky, yellow cream with a distinctive crust on the surface. The cream is made by heating unpasteurized cow's milk and left in a shallow pan for many hours which causes the cream to rise to the surface and 'clot,' and it is this which is skimmed off, and you will find served with scones, afternoon teas, and on summer berries. The cream should have a firm crust, and underneath will be a thick smooth and utterly delicious yellow cream and has 55% butterfat.

Cornish clotted cream is a holder of the EU's Protection of Designated Origin. 

Where Does Clotted Cream Come From?

Clotted Cream originates in Devon and Cornwall in the South Western corner of England but is now also successfully made in Yorkshire, which does not sit very well with the those from the South West. Stamfrey Farm has been successfully making the cream on their farm now for many years and has scooped many awards, proving it is also well made in the north and the south. 

How to Eat Clotted Cream

Clotted Cream is an essential component of either a Devon or Cornish Cream tea; it would be unheard of to have it without and is served in place of butter. The cream differs in each county as one spreads the cream on the scone, then tops it with jam, the other put jam on first followed by the cream.

The cream is not restricted to the afternoon teas, though used in much the same way as double or thick cream. However, it cannot be whipped and is too thick to use in or on a cake. 

In the summer months a huge dollop of clotted cream on fresh strawberries, or any berry for that matter. The two together are the actual foods of the season. The famous Strawberries and Cream of Wimbledon though does not use clotted cream, that will simply be thick or whipped cream. 

Clotted cream is not okay in cooking in the same way as other creams are.

Where Can I Buy English Clotted Cream?

Unlike other types of cream, clotted travels very well, and because of this, the cream was sent through the post for decades and to all corners of the world. The best source is online and will not be hard to find, just make sure it comes from Devon or Cornwall to make sure what you are buying is authentic unless you are buying it from Stamfrey Farm.