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24 September 2014

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Tony Beard's Dartmoor Diary
Tony  Beard
Tony Beard on Dartmoor.
Start quoteNow then you Restaurateurs and high flying chefs, let us have Junket and Cream on the menu - and real cream at that! Now known as Clotted Cream - perhaps we should revert to the old End quotename of Clouted Cream.
Anton Coaker If you enjoy Tony's Dartmoor Diary, you may also like to take a
look at Anton Coaker's Farming Diary.
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Wheal Betsy

Way back in 1796 a Mr. Marshall published a book entitled 'The Rural Economy of the West of England'. He recorded a chapter on 'Dairy Management' in which he wrote, in some detail, on the way milk was scalded to produce 'CLOUTED CREAM'.

He related how the milk was first put into 'broad pans and vessels of brass or earthenware, stood for some hours, then placed over a gentle heat until the milk approached boiling heat, the proper heat being indicated by pimples and blisters rising to the surface of the cream'.

Clotted Cream
Farmhouse clotted cream - made the traditional way

This method is still employed on many Devonshire farms, where a cream pan is always stood in another slightly larger pan which contains boiling water - scalding the cream we call it.

On NO account must the milk be allowed to boil or it will mar the whole process and all that will be left is a thin skin.

Mr Marshall continued by stating that cream when cooled is called 'scalded cream' or 'clouted cream', the later possibly describing the tough cloth-like texture which it acquires by this process. (Clout = Cloth. Remember the old saying 'Cast not a clout till May be out'?)

The cream remains thus on the milk - which is rendered 'very sheer lean and blue' by the process until needed to make butter or eaten as cream.

The clouts or rags of cream were thrown into a large wooden bowl and stirred by a circuitous motion of the hand and arm until the particles unite, leaving a small quantity of liquid called Butter Milk.

The solid mass could be turned into butter.

Fruits Of The Land
The origins of this method can be traced back to early farming days when the milk of two or three cows could be used for such a varied production of cheese, butter and cream - and the milk (by the aid of fire and heat) could be preserved for longer than fresh milk would keep (early pasteurisation?)

Marshall continued by mentioning 'Juncates', or junkets, as another peculiarity to the county.
Warm the milk, add a little rennet, so simple and delicious. Now then you Restaurateurs and high flying chefs, let us have Junket and Cream on the menu - and real cream at that! Now known as Clotted Cream - perhaps we should revert to the old name of Clouted Cream.

Clotted cream compliments so many different foods

Do not forget the traditional Devon Cream Tea of scones, cream and strawberry jam. I knew an old farmer when I was just a 'Buye' who every day for breakfast had bread, cream and honey. He called it "Fruits of the Land".

He was right of course. Bread from the grain, cream from the cow and honey from that prolific worker the Honey Bee!

In Deb'm us puts the cream on the scone or bread first and the jam or honey on top. If you have neither jam nor honey, put on Golden Syrup and that's called "thunder and lightning".

My mouth is watering just thinking about it!

See you soon. Yer old mate, Tony.

End graphic Sphagnum moss >> Go to the last Dartmoor Diary entry
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