Monday, May 29, 2017

Happy Memorial Day!

Today a lot of us are celebrating Memorial Day with food, and chances are good that a dessert involving strawberries and cream is on the menu. Summertime is made for whipped cream and fresh fruit. Whether it's berries or peaches, there's nothing quite like that combination.

But whipped cream doesn't always want to cooperate for long. I'll admit that I have kept whipped cream in the fridge for a number of days without having it weep. But if it's on a cake, it will start to look shabby in a day if you don't stabilize it. Daryl and I were talking about this the other day. Can you believe it? Yes, the Mystery Lovers' Kitchen authors talk about food with one another!

I thought I would devote today to stabilizing whipped cream because a lot of people don't understand how to do it. You can buy a lovely spongecake and strawberries, but I don't think you can't buy stabilized whipped cream. I will admit that it can take a few tries to get it right. This is probably not the best thing for a novice baker to tackle.

Before you get so scared that you run away, let me say that it's really not difficult. But it involves gelatin. Consequently, it can go lumpy quite fast. The process isn't elaborate. Dissolve the gelatin in water or cream and beat it into the whipped cream. See? That's not so bad, is it? You just have to make sure that the gelatin is completely dissolved and that it doesn't start setting up before you mix it into the whipped cream.

So, make sure the kids aren't tugging at you or fighting with each other. Make sure the dog doesn't need to go out. Do not answer the phone or the door. This requires your concentration for only a few minutes, but you do have to pay attention to what you're doing in order for it to work.

How to Stabilize Whipped Cream

I use a ratio of one little packet of unflavored gelatin to one cup of heavy cream. So if you're making a lot, say to frost a cake, then you would need two packets for two cups of heavy cream.

4 teaspoons of cold water or cold heavy cream
1 packet (about 1 teaspoon) unflavored gelatin
1 cup heavy cream for whipping
1/4 to 1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Pour the 4 teaspoons of water or heavy cream into a small pot. Sprinkle the gelatin over it. Give it a few minutes to thicken.

Meanwhile, beat the 1 cup of heavy cream until it begins to thicken and take shape. Add the sugar and vanilla and whip. Do not overbeat!

Place the gelatin over medium-low heat and stir constantly until gelatin is completely dissolved. Remove from heat and cool, but don't allow it to set. (If it should set, try reheating and stirring to dissolve it again.)

While slowly beating the cream, pour the gelatin into it. Whip at high speed until it holds a stiff peak.

Dissolve gelatin. (Dark edges are reflections in the pot. Sorry!)

Beat dissolved gelatin into whipped cream.

Have a Happy Memorial Day!


  1. Thanks for the recipe, Krista! I love the taste of whipped cream on cakes, but never use it since it doesn't last. I'll definitely be using this method!

    1. We love it, too, Kim. It's light and refreshing.

  2. I'm with Kim on this one. We used whipped cream we would only make a small cake and eat it quickly. Which was no problem since I only made it when there was going to be a gathering of 6 or more. So I really do appreciate this recipe. Della

    1. If you're going to eat it all in one day it's not really necessary. But we like to enjoy cakes over a few days. : )

  3. Memorial Day greetings, everyone! Krista--I love your tribute at the head of the post. God bless all our vets and the families and friends who lost loved ones in service to our country. Their sacrifice is not forgotten, and we honor them today.

    On the foodie front...I completely agree with you on stabilizing whipped cream. A few simple steps makes all the difference. This is a wonderfully handy post for the start of summer. Have a great day.

    ~ Cleo

    1. Thanks, Cleo. I hope you're enjoying Memorial Day as well!

  4. This is sure to come in handy. Thank you! Happy Memorial Day!

  5. A stunningly beautiful cake.
    Great idea, but what is this concept of cake lasting more than one day? ;o)