Well, I now have a new cooking thing under my belt: making crème fraîche, and I will say it was both fun and rewarding. Took longer than the recipe called for, but that is because I run my apartment well below the 72 F that it really wants. I followed the video found here.
1st use: sweetened, whipped, as a topping for blueberry-walnut pie
2nd use: with chives, on bacon-potato egg pie
Whipping crème fraîche by hand was easier than expected as well. I didn't need a lot, so I spooned 3 tbsp into a bowl and just beat it with a whisk. Not much happened for about 40 seconds, and just as I was starting to wonder, it thickened up amazingly in about a dozen strokes.