Cake Decorating Community - Cakes We Bake

Hi all,

 

I am quite good with gumpaste icing and my cakes look nice. Quite a few of my clients dont want gumpaste (we call it plastic icing here), they prefer the taste of butter icing.

 

When I work with butter icing, I usually don't like the cake much. 

Any expert advice on how best to make the butter icing smoother and nicer looking?

 

PS. In South Africa we don't have all the fancy equipment and ingredients US has.

 

Thanks

 

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You have all fantastic as usual and have learnt alot. I just love this site!
They say you need 10 000 hours of practice to become an expert - I'm getting there. :-) I was born to do this - gives me so much joy.
Okay, after the recession there are quite a few things which are too expensive to import, so sadly we tend to lose out on our favourite products. We only get 2 types of cooking margarine here. Any alternative to Meringue powder?
I am going to the hardware store today for the trowel. Funny, most of my equipment have been bought at craft shops and hardware stores.
Happy baking all!
Egg whites were the original meringue powder.  BC does not have to have meringue powder added, that's a myth created by Wilton to sell more meringue powder - although some people swear by it.  I have used it in blind tests and meringue powder made no changes in my BC except give it a weird flavor.  It did not crust any better or worse.
I'm sure Sharon Zambito would ship to Africa, and her Buttercream DVD is a must.  She also includes a recipe that does well in heat.  Check out her Youtube to see if it's something you'd be interested in.
dOES THAT mEAN YOU USE SWISS MERINGUE OR ITALIAN MERINGUE OR SUBSTITUTE BUTTER FOR SHORTENING IN AMERICAN BUTTERCREAM.? Will taht hold good in hot climate?

jeri c said:
I use my bench scraper for everything.  It is Aetco brand and I love it.  I use an all butter buttercream because I do not like shortning.  But I do mostly fondant work.  I always put a layer of buttercream under the fondant for flavor though.

Pearse, if you do not have airconditioning or say the event is outside and it is very hot.  I would go with the American Buttercream using the shortening or 1/2 butter.  It is not my favorite, but it will stand up better then Italian or swiss.  If you don't have to travel far and you have airconditioning, you can use the Itailian or swiss, but you must be careful because, if left outside very long, it could melt or even spoil.  Last year, I used Italian Buttercream and it was about 85 deg or more.  I do not have airconditioning and the butter was practically melting as it came out of the tube.  Thankfully, it was in a covered area and wasn't extremely hot at the location.  It was fine, but I certainly would ask where the cake would be sitting at.  Would it be cool enough and protected from the sun?  Kathleen Lang of the Confectionary Chalet has some good recipes for different buttercreams.

 

thanks winona for the info.Appreciate it.

Winona C. Bannon said:

Pearse, if you do not have airconditioning or say the event is outside and it is very hot.  I would go with the American Buttercream using the shortening or 1/2 butter.  It is not my favorite, but it will stand up better then Italian or swiss.  If you don't have to travel far and you have airconditioning, you can use the Itailian or swiss, but you must be careful because, if left outside very long, it could melt or even spoil.  Last year, I used Italian Buttercream and it was about 85 deg or more.  I do not have airconditioning and the butter was practically melting as it came out of the tube.  Thankfully, it was in a covered area and wasn't extremely hot at the location.  It was fine, but I certainly would ask where the cake would be sitting at.  Would it be cool enough and protected from the sun?  Kathleen Lang of the Confectionary Chalet has some good recipes for different buttercreams.

 

basic buttercream icing... 

 


12# powdered sugar


3# butter (salted)


3# shortening


2.5 cups milk



2 Tbsp vanilla extract


Mix the butter and shortening first till smooth. Scrape the bowl & allow to mix again to ensure smooth consistency. Add powdered sugar slowly over the course of 4-5 minutes, finish by adding the milk slowly as not to spill.scrape the bowl one last time and put the mixer on medium till fluffy consistency that you like. I mix my icing about 7-10 minutes.


Note that this does make a very large batch of icing.

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