Cream is the high fat portion of cow’s milk. It is separated from milk via a process known as creaming in which cream that rises to the top of un-homogenized milk is skimmed. Centrifuge is used to accelerate the production of cream in industrial manufacture. In the US, heavy whipping cream has to have a fat content of at least 36%. Other types of cream include light whipping cream (fat content between 30% and 36%) and half-and-half (10.5% fat).
The uses of cream are nearly limitless in culinary applications. The most common uses include ice creams, custards, sauces, and in recipes in which fat is essential.
Recipes that utilize cream are usually rich and thick. Fat in baked goods is responsible for perceived moistness, so cream is can help produce very moist products. However, the danger in using cream comes from its most delicious quality. Because creams are over 1/3 fat and fat contains 9 calories per gram, cream is capable of delivering large doses of calories to a person who is unaware. Cream is an example of an energy dense food.