Split Whipped Cream
Q: Why does whipped cream sometimes separate if you keep it in the fridge before using?
A: The stability of whipped cream is mainly related to both the freshness of the cream and the speed at which you whisk it. The fresher the cream and the slower you whisk (for example whisking with a balloon hand whisk or on low speed with an electric mixer) will ultimately give you a more stable foam and will be less likely to separate or split on standing. In addition to this, in relation to the whisking speed, the faster you whisk the more likely the cream will be over whisked as you have less control over when you stop and it can turn very quickly towards the end. Even though you may not over whisk it as such, the closer the cream is to being over whisked the greater the likelihood of it being less stable and more likely to split on standing.
It is interesting to note that the fat content of a cream will also not only determine the final consistency of the whipped cream but also its stability – double cream (with a butterfat content of 45% or above) will be more stable than thin/pouring cream (with a butterfat content of around 35%) when whipped.