French Cuisine

Coeur à la Crème

It may be that Mr. Price has told a lie on page 58 of the Treasury. I don't know for sure, but here's what he says in the preface to the recipe:

We have arrived at this very acceptable substitute for the French cheese though trial and error . . .

The substitute the Price's arrived at through trial and error is cottage cheese. How much trial and how much error did they go through? Even in the 50s in California in L.A. surely there was a cheese shop? Surely there was a supplier?

Many contemporary Coeur a la creme recipes call for cream cheese or cottage cheese. I think if one were to try to be authentic, then using Neufchatel or creme blanc or both would be the way to go. I like a little bite to my creamed cheeses so I'd whip some tart goat cheese in there too.

I'm giving Price a little guff here because I hold his taste in high esteem and my inner snob is nose to the ceiling over using crappy cottage cheese in this recipe. But perhaps I am just being a snob. It's a calling.

Price's recipe calls for lining heart shaped wicker baskets with cheesecloth but we live in a modern culinary utopia here in 2015 and you can buy awesome coeur de creme molds online.

Coeur à la Crème


  • 1 pound cottage cheese OR SOMETHING ELSE
  • 3 tablespoons confectioner's sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup cream
  • 3 egg whites, beaten stiffly
  • fresh berries


  • Strain the cottage cheese
  • Add sugar and vanilla
  • Whip 1 cup cream and mix with the cheese until it is well blended
  • Fold the egg whites in and blend them well
  • Line 12 heart shaped wicker baskets with squares of cheesecloth rung out in cold water
  • Spoon the mixture into the baskets
  • Fold the cheesecloth over the cheese, place the baskets on a tray, and refrigerate to drain overnight
  • Presentation
  • You can unmold these little hearts onto dessert plates and top with the berries. But it's much cooler to let your guest do it themselves.
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is an award-winning author and columnist from Chicago. His newest book is The Full English, a humorous travel memoir. His previous book, Death By Children, was IndieFab's 2013 Humor Book of the Year. Bull is the founder and senior writer for Creative Writer PRO, and the impresario, host, and owner with his wife, Colleen, of Chicago's premier private supper club, Eating Vincent Price.

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