Traditionally made by allowing fresh cream to sour naturally, but today cultured sour cream is made using pasteurized single or double cream that is soured by adding a lactic–acid producing bacteria. This results in a thick, smooth and slightly acidic cream. To add shelf life, it is often stabilized with additives such as gelatine. Sour cream is a traditional ingredient in Eastern European and Russian cooking, adding richness to goulashes and soups, but its use is now more widespread—as a topping for baked potatoes, in soups, dips, sauces and baked goods like cheesecake.
Also known as — soured cream