I got a new toy! I want to tell you about a device for making and dispensing whipped cream. It works by injecting nitrous oxide (chemical notation N2O) into flavored or unflavored cream. It works GREAT!
It is very simple to use. Unscrew the top and pour in cream (my model takes half a pint) and flavorings such as powdered sugar, vanilla extract or liqueur. Put the top back on and give it a shake. In the cap there is a fitting designed to hold a N2O capsule. Insert the capsule in the charger holder and screw it into place. That is all there is to the prep. My "Whip-It!" brand model comes with several tips so you can make decorative designs with the whipped cream if desired.
Squeeze the lever to get perfrect whipped cream without the preservatives you find in the off-the-shelf aerosol canned stuff like Reddi-Whip. You also get the benefit of being able to flavor the cream any way you like.
Money-wise it is a wash compared with the supermarket canned whipped cream. You have to buy the cream of course and the N2O cartridges which cost anywhere from $.25 to $1 each depending on where you buy them and the quantity purchased. Online (Amazon and eBay) seem to offer the best prices. I found that an N2O cartridge is good for two fillings, so the cost is minimal if you buy at the low end of the price range.
I bought my dispenser on eBay for $23 including shipping and a 10-pack of N2O cartridges. It is very nicely made (in Austria). Larger models are available, but you probably would not want to go any larger than 1 pint capacity for home use.
The instructions say that if the cream you use is fresh, it will last at least 2 weeks if stored in the fridge. I haven't needed to keep it that long so cannot tell you if that is accurate., but it seems reasonable. If you buy cream that has been treated with ultra-high temperatures, it should last much longer. The manufacturer recommends that you use "whipping" cream rather than "heavy" cream.
I found that the whipped cream practically explodes out of the dispenser when the handle is squeezed. So be a bit careful the first time you use it.
In any event, if you are an aficionado of schlag as I am, I strongly recommend that you get yourself one of these toys.