Originally Posted by Cerise
Sounds like a sweet sauce, rather than a savoury sauce (Marsala & pineapple juice). It's really your call, & it depends on what you are making. There are other thickening agents i.e. flour, or adding sour cream, cream cheese, mascarpone, etc at the end of cooking. I prefer half and half. Again, it depends.
The purpose of the cream in my sauces isn't to thicken the sauce, it's to make the sauce more creamy. I usually just reduce the sauces to thicken them. You could stick a chicken's beak in a pot of hot water and then reduce that and eventually get some kind of reduction... although I'm not so sure the chicken would like that.
What I have been talking about, at least my main use of cream, is at the end of cooking a sauce to finish it.
I hate half-and-half. Use milk, use cream, or use them both, but I think it's pointless to buy a product where they mix two things at the factory when you can buy them separately yourself and have more control.
Some people like half-and-half in their coffee. I like black myself but I can understand why milk might be too thin and cream too strong, in coffee. I'm just lucky that when I started drinking coffee I tried all the ways, and they all tasted terrible, so I eventually settled on black. Only later did I start liking coffee. I guess it's an acquired taste...