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Help! Cream separated in stroganoff!

I tried to make beef stroganoff tonight, but the sour cream (or the half & half) separated and was gross. I did add 3 Tbsp. sherry to the whole thing (*after* everything else was in - consomme, mushrooms, beef, sour cream, half & half, etc.). Could the sherry have made it separate? I have seen stroganoff recipes that call for alcohol, such as cognac, so I would think there has to be a way to make it not separate. If anyone has overcome this or has ideas, please help! thanks!

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  1. Were the dairy products at room temp before being added? Adding cold dairy can cause separation. Also, did you add the dairy gradually and fully incorporate into the sauce before adding a bit more and incorporating (and so on until it was all used)? Too high a cooking tempearture can also cause separation.

    1. It may not be authentic, but I use just a little bit of cornstarch slurry to bring it together. Did it last night, and even though I had to re-heat for some late arrivals, it did not break.

      1. You should add the sherry to the browned meat to deglaze, before adding the cream.

        1 Reply
        1. Cooking the cream too much might have caused it to separate. Next time add the sour cream last and heat it for a short time until it warms through.

          1. Thanks everyone! I did none of those things, so I have some work to do next time!