Swiss Meringue Butter Cream

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Swiss meringue butter cream! For the past 2 years of my slightly more serious baking life, I have been obsessed with whipped cream frostings. Buttercream was just way to sweet and buttery for me. And that was because I have yet to discover this wonderful SMBC!

The first time I came upon SMBC was when I was searching for a nice frosting, that can withstand the hot Singapore weather, for a cake for my friend. SMBC popped up in a lot of blogs and it seemed like the obvious choice. It was not that complicated too. Definitely more complicated than a usual buttercream recipe but still manageable.

So for my first attempt, I used a hand mixer like this and it failed miserably. The entire mixture was soupy beyond imagination – the meringue didn’t even form LOL. I wasn’t sure what went wrong.

For my second attempt, I dug up this really old stand mixer that looks something like this. The meringue whipped up like a darling and the SMBC was very nicely whipped up. But I didn’t melt my sugar and egg white mixture well enough so the SMBC was grainy. Also, to prevent the butter from melting in Singapore’s ‘room temperature’, I split the butter cubes into 2 and brought each batch out of the freezer roughly 5 minutes before they’re supposed to go into the mixture.

For my most recent attempt, I used my NEWLY BOUGHT KITCHENAID MIXER OMG WOOHOO.20150517_122235

Let’s sidetrack a little and talk about my NEWLY BOUGHT KITCHENAID MIXER. My father bought it during a warehouse sales for my birthday and OMG for a few days, it seemed to good to be true to own such a beautiful and sleek machine. The mixer performs very well too! But it’s a little too heavy and since there’s no space on my kitchen counter top, I have to slug this heavy thing out from a cabinet below every time urgh. But other than that, this thing is a 100/100.20150528_114611

Ok back to SMBC. So I was mixing the SMBC with my kitchenaid mixer and as expected, the mixture became very soupy. I remembered the advice to just let it keep mixing so I did. After a very very long time of letting it continue mixing, the mixture still appeared soupy and looked like over-whipped whipped cream (like everything just split). I was about to put the entire bowl into the fridge when at this magical moment, the split mixture started to shrink from the sides and.. come together to form a velvety cream!! OMG! So the main point is to continue whisking past the it-looks-like-failed-whipped-cream stage.20150528_140637

For my 2nd attempt, I used this recipe which required more butter. For my 3rd attempt, I used a less buttery recipe. The less buttery recipe gave a more pleasant tasting cream in my opinion and is less oily. However, I’m not sure if I did something wrong in the process but I find that the less buttery recipe holds less well – it gets soft more easily than the more butter recipe (look at picture above). For the more butter recipe, I frosted a cake and brought a slice of it out for the whole day in hot and sunny Singapore, and it still held its shape. For the less butter recipe, I did something stupid and piped it onto a warm cupcake and the frosting melted almost instantly -_-

But anyways, after many years of failed cake decorating, I finally realised that I have been using the wrong decorating tip all along. So I finally bought a 1M Wilton tip and tried it out with this SMBC. Even with my lacklustre half-baked decorating skills, I managed a decent looking beautiful frosting. Look at the beautiful sharp edges!

Recipe & tips:

The more buttery recipe – http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2014/12/swiss-buttercream-meringue-frosting-recipe.html

The less buttery recipe – http://thetoughcookie.com/2013/12/05/battle-of-the-buttercreams-part-vi-swiss-buttercream-and-test-results/

 

 

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