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LaMiaCucina

Crusting buttercream quest

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Greetings fellow enthusiasts!

I am a relatively new member, but long time reader of EG. I've learned quite a bit from all of you, and I hope to gather suggestions for my dilemma.

As with many mom and pop bakeries, our local favorite closed about eight years ago. It made one terrific buttercream! It was a crusting variety, yet was soft and fluffy underneath. It tickled the roof of your mouth when you ate it, yet wasn't a pasty, too sweet icing. I have tried to come close with many attempts, but have been unsuccessful so far.

At the time, the local bakery supply (I had a small, home-based cake, cookie, and candy business) told me that solid fondant (the type that comes in a 50# block like shortening) was used in the recipe. I am sure that no egg whites were in it. The owner was a master baker, so I am not disillusioned to think that I will be able to fully recreate it, but it would be a great treat to come close. I don't know if ethnicity matters or not, but I believe he was of German decent.

One other question: Their white cake was a very tender, fine crumb cake. It was moist yet held together very well. What do you use in your cakes to achieve this?

Many thanks in advance.

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from what i can tell, most 'crusting' buttercreams are based on powdered sugar with either cream or milk added. these tend to be very American (as far as ethnicity is concerned).

other than that, i can't really help as i love my meringue buttercreams too much :wink:

there is a thread on the 'best white cake' recipes somewhere on eG. i'll try to get a link to that.

edited to add: link to yellow and white cake thread


Edited by alanamoana (log)

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I doubt solid fondant was used in the buttercream you're describing.... even if you melted it and blended it in it'd still solidify again... it's designed to do that. They were probably using the fondant for something else.

You can make any buttercream crust just by adding a little meringue powder. It alters the taste a little but it works. For a meringue or swiss buttercream, make as usual but cream the meringue powder in with the butter. (About 1 Tbsp. per batch)

As for the white cake I can't help because white isn't a flavour so I never bothered making one. :wink:

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Poured fondant is most likely what they are referring to, not rolled fondant. This is the stuff you use to coat petit fours, the tops of eclairs...

If you were to purchase poured fondant, it would come in a tub or block; you just melt it over hot water for use. If you are looking for a recipe to create the poured fondant, the food processor poured fondant recipe in the Cake Bible is a good one to use and easy to make. Waiting for it to cool is the most time consuming part of the process.

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My Lambeth Method Of Cake Decorating has a recipe for buttercream with fondant in it, the kind you melt and pour, although he has it broken in small pieces and whipped with condensed milk, powdered sugar, butter, shortening and heavy cream. It is very fluffy and very good, but not sure if it crusts. If you want the recipe I can find it again.


Edited by Sif (log)

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Thank you for the replies.

My guess is that since this was their main frosting, and their prices were not high, the ingredients had to be simple and cost-effective. I know that both icing sugar and shortening are in there, as well as vanilla, but how they got that sugary coating remains a mystery.

Oh well, I'll have to keep trying.

Thanks again!!

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Poured fondant is most likely what they are referring to, not rolled fondant.  This is the stuff you use to coat petit fours, the tops of eclairs...

If you were to purchase poured fondant,  it would come in a tub or block; you just melt it over hot water for use.  If you are looking for a recipe to create the poured fondant, the food processor poured fondant recipe in the Cake Bible is a good one to use and easy to make.  Waiting for it to cool is the most time consuming part of the process.

Jeanne, can poured fondant be poured over a buttercream frosting? Or would it turn the undercoating of buttercream into sludge?

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My guess is that since this was their main frosting, and their prices were not high, the ingredients had to be simple and cost-effective.  I know that both icing sugar and shortening are in there, as well as vanilla, but how they got that sugary coating remains a mystery.

Oh I didn't realize it was one of those powdered sugar/crisco deals. Because the main ingredient is sugar all you need to do is add a little water or milk and any part touching air will crust.

You really should try a meringue buttercream though. Much better.

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[

Jeanne, can poured fondant be poured over a buttercream frosting? Or would it turn the undercoating of buttercream into sludge?

You could... the fondant will stay fluid for a while when it's still warm, but you'd have to work quickly and the cake (already crumb coated) would have to be well chillled. But I'd probably use a white choc ganache instead, come to think of it. The thing with the poured fondant is that it can wrinkle if you were to move the cake, it can crack at the edges and you'd lose bits here and there (that happens with my petit fours if I am sloppy with them. I ended up switching to coating chocolate for the petit fours, it tastes better and I get better coverage with them, but you couldn't use that on a cake!)

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[

Jeanne, can poured fondant be poured over a buttercream frosting? Or would it turn the undercoating of buttercream into sludge?

You could... the fondant will stay fluid for a while when it's still warm, but you'd have to work quickly and the cake (already crumb coated) would have to be well chillled. But I'd probably use a white choc ganache instead, come to think of it. The thing with the poured fondant is that it can wrinkle if you were to move the cake, it can crack at the edges and you'd lose bits here and there (that happens with my petit fours if I am sloppy with them. I ended up switching to coating chocolate for the petit fours, it tastes better and I get better coverage with them, but you couldn't use that on a cake!)

I've become a big fan of white chocolate buttercream, and I was wondering too whether it was possible to do a white chocolate ganache in the same way as a dark chocolate ganache (you can see I'm a total chocolate novice here).

So is the technique the same for white chocolate ganache? You just substitute white for the dark?

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Use less cream with a white chocolate ganache. So my usual dark choc ganache is 2# choc, 8 oz butter; 2# cream. For white choc ganache, I'd use 2# choc (no butter) and 1# cream to start with and see if the consistency is what you want. Different brands of choc will behave differently with various amounts of cream so there's some playing room there.

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Use less cream with a white chocolate ganache.  So my usual dark choc ganache is 2# choc, 8 oz butter; 2# cream.  For white choc ganache, I'd use 2# choc (no butter) and 1# cream to start with and see if the consistency is what you want.  Different brands of choc will behave differently with various amounts of cream so there's some playing room there.

Thanks Jeanne. I'll give that a try.

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la mia,

I use a "bastard type of buttercream" for some applications. It was taught to m e by a Master Konditori (cake maker from Germany) It is more of a ratio than a recipe.

1 lb fondant (soft, not melted) : 1 lb. Hi Ratio Shortening

These 2 items are mixed on slow speed in a stand mixer with the paddle attachment. 1 cup Heavy cream is added to smooth out the mixture. Store at room temperature for 1 day or refrigerate for up to 1 week. When using place in mixer with whisk attachment and mix to desired consistency.

I do not think this crusts, but I will experiment with crusting as soon as I can.

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Thanks, Brian! I wonder what would happen if milk or water were used in place of the cream. I know that this frosting did not need to be kept in the fridge. In fact, the longer it sat, the more crust it developed. The petals of roses made with it were all crusted, almost like a royal icing would, but the base of the rose still soft. (It didn't taste of royal, though.)

I have made my own fondant, but it was very soft - more syrup than solid. I did come "close" once to at least the crusting with it, but the next time I made it, the results were not the same. I can't seem to get the crusting without too much of a sickening-sweet-pasty icing sugar taste.

Someone told me that some bakers use a bit of cake mix in their frosting as part of the base to cut the sweetness. I do know salt does this, but I was surprised to learn about the mix.

This would all have been avoided if the children would have taken over the shop when the guy retired. Then I could have had my cake and ate it, too! :biggrin: (Yes, I preferred their frosting over mine.) :shock: I am still trying to locate someone who may have worked there to see if I can get some pointers.

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I came across a website yesterday that has a recipe for what it terms "crusting cream cheese buttercream" (scroll to about middle of page). Haven't tried it yet, but I intend to.

Here's the link:

http://www.designmeacake.com/recipes.html

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