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Homemade Sour Cream Did Not Set?

Just under a week ago, I tried to make homemade sour cream, but it did not ever thicken. It's been sitting out and now looks curdled and separated. I have a different recipe I'm going to try, but I wanted to know if what I have from my first attempt is salvageable in any way. What is in those jars now, can it be used or reused?

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The ingredients included half and half (store bought) and buttermilk (left from butter I made from heavy cream and a bit of whole milk, both store bought), which was just about a week old when I tried to make the sour cream. It had been refrigerated that whole time. Thanks in advance!

By MystikMommy

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January 17, 20120 found this helpful

Unless your cream or milk were unpasteurized (very unlikely in the U.S.), your buttermilk probably didn't have the bacteria cultures necessary to make your sour cream set. Commercial buttermilk is thick and tangy because it has those cultures added - like yogurt does.

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I'm not sure if you can salvage your attempt at sour cream, but if you want to try, drain off the thin (possibly greenish) liquid on top, and then squish the curds through a fine mesh strainer and whisk the results, to smooth it out. Then do a sniff and taste test. If it smells okay, taste a little bit. Even if it's bad, it won't kill you. If it's nasty, throw it out. If it tastes all right, put it in a clean container and stick it in the fridge.

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 186 Feedbacks
January 17, 20120 found this helpful

My late mother used to make sour milk or cream, just by adding a little vinegar to regular milk or cream. You must be trying to make a sour cream more like the cultured sour cream that you buy.

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She also used a similar method to make buttermilk. The sour milk and cream that she made was used for baking, etc.

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January 18, 20120 found this helpful

Don't they make cottage cheese out of the curdles? Contact a dairy or the ag dept at your local university.

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