khs1030 Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 3:05pm
post #1 of

I use Swiss buttercream for my cakes--the kind with butter, egg whites and a hot sugar syrup beaten into them. It's so outrageously good that I can't imagine using any of the Crisco-based buttercreams. BUT--I'm doing my first tiered cake for 100 people, and without a Hobart at my disposal, doing real buttercream will be a nightmare. So I'm thinking about doing a part butter-part shortening frosting.

Do people ever complain about it? It just seems so greasy to me. Plus I have a problem with the trans fats in shortening; sure, cake isn't health food, but I use all natural ingredients, including natural flavorings, and it's one of my selling points. Using Crisco just feels wrong!

Having said that, I think I'm still going to have to try it. So--what part-shortening buttercream do you all like the best?

82 replies
nlh Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 3:15pm
post #2 of

I just made a post about this stuff. The Wilton recipe is terrible. I've tried adding butter and almond flavoring, and using 1/2 butter, but no matter what I do it's just gross. I would not want this served for a special occasion. I so agree with you on the taste.

ntertayneme Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 3:18pm
post #3 of

Can you get the Swiss buttercream icing you use to smooth down well? I know with shortening based buttercream, you can. I've never had any complaints w/my cakes and I use the shortening based buttercream icing. For weddings, it or MMF is all I will use on my cakes. But really, this is the choice/opinion of the cake decorator themselves ... I'd love to know if the icing you use can be smoothed down really well. I use a Viva papertowel on mine and can get them really smooth. Does the icing you use crust? I'd like to try the recipe if it did icon_smile.gif

khs1030 Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 3:30pm
post #4 of

No, this icing definitely doesn't crust. I'm still perfecting the smoothing, but it works pretty well. I've been using a metal spatula dipped in hot water then wiped dry; for a client this week I'm going to try a flat plastic wall paper smoother I got at the hardware store.

Will post a recipe later; we're off to the beach for the afternoon--it's finally cool enough here in Chicago that we won't boil to death in the sun!

potatocakes Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 3:42pm
post #5 of

I usually use the Wilton recipe for buttercream, substituting all shortening and using butter flavoring if I want all-white icing. I've never had a complaint - just the opposite. People love it. Actually, if I use a different icing (I did a cake in MMF the other week), my family complains that they like the other icing so much! I haven't used an all butter icing, but I've tried half butter, half Crisco and really like the flavor. I think an all-butter would be wonderful, too, just harder to work with.

nlh Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 3:45pm
post #6 of

I would love to have your recipe as well.

Have fun at the beach!

cindycakes2 Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 3:47pm
post #7 of

I normally do the same as potatocakes does...have had wedding cake clients always come back saying the taste of the cake was great! (but they probably haven't had the all butter recipe like you are talking about)
The best think about the Criscoe recipe is the crusting factor...you are able to smooth it out really well.

cakeconfections Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 3:53pm
post #8 of

I personally do not care for an all butter frosting. I used to make mine with criso but now us a high ratio shortening. But everyone loves my frosting. Sometimes i use very little butter . The trick to mine is the flavoring. I have a combination of 4 to 5 flavors that I use.

MariaLovesCakes Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 3:59pm
post #9 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by cakeconfections

I personally do not care for an all butter frosting. I used to make mine with criso but now us a high ratio shortening. But everyone loves my frosting. Sometimes i use very little butter . The trick to mine is the flavoring. I have a combination of 4 to 5 flavors that I use.




Ditto here! The trick is definetely the flavorings... I use vanilla and almond extract on my icing which 100% Crisco. I just love the texture of this icing...

The people that I make cakes for love the icing because of the almond extract in it... especially people from Puerto Rico since almond is a flavor they use a lot there in the icing and in the cake...

Yumm!!!!

adven68 Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 4:11pm

I agree...the flavorings make it taste great (I, personally, like it plain). I use a 50/50 Crisco/butter ratio. Add Hershey's cocoa powder to get the best chocolate icing mmmmmmm....

Also...I think Crisco actually has less saturated fat that butter. And it's just vegetable fat....do they add anything artificial? I have to double check, but I don't think so.....

MariaLovesCakes Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 4:15pm

Oh, just to add a little more... I did a birthday cake for a co worker and one of the people there told to give more icing because SHE JUST LOVES this type of icing...

Also, Crisco has less saturated fat than butter, 3% for Crisco and 7% for regular butter so actually Crisco is better than butter in that respect...
I have tried Swiss Buttercream, like it, but rather use something else... too buttery for me.... I am going to try a recipe I have for French Buttercream but I think I may stick with Italian Meringue Buttercream, since I read that is the most stable of all the Meringue Buttercreams...

Simplydelicious Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 5:20pm

How do you transport a Swiss Buttercream iced cake? Doesn't it have to be refrigerated? I live in Georgia, right now the temp is in the 90's and although you run the air in the car the sun is still very strong. Please let me know what is the best way to transport.

khs1030 Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 7:37pm

"Also, Crisco has less saturated fat than butter, 3% for Crisco and 7% for regular butter so actually Crisco is better than butter in that respect... "

Saturated fat isn't the problem; it's the trans fats, which are found in any food that has partially hydrogenated oil (which is practically processed food at the regular grocery store). In my other life I'm a health writer; years ago, I interviewed Walter Willett, chair of the nutrition dept. at Harvard, and he was very clear about trans fats being much more heart-damaging than even sat fat. He told me that trans fats are the absolute worst food you can put in your body. Basically, if you have a choice between eating a tub of lard and a tub of Crisco, choose the lard.

I could go on and on--just ask my friends; they've heard my anti-trans diatribes till their eyes glaze over--but I'll just say I don't buy food with trans fats. Ever.

Ironbaker Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 7:53pm

I just wanted to make a clarification...transfat is much different from saturated fat. It's an UNsaturated fat. And butter doesn't have nearly as much as Crisco does.

KHS1030, there is a new Crisco that claims to have no transfats. I read up on it and there will always be traces of transfats and the metals in any partially hydrogenated product. But it is less than regular Crisco. That's just an alternative for you if you do try the shortening recipe.

I also use the 50/50 recipe also (butter/shortening) and use a mixture of flavorings. (almond, butter and a secret ingredient) Everyone that's tasted it love its although I try not to eat any icing. I've never liked icings much (I used to hate the oreo middles, I know I'm a weirdo!icon_biggrin.gif ) and I have issues with the transfat stuff.

Can you decorate with the Swiss buttercream? I'd like to give it a try sometimes, I was just always intimidated with the whole process. The other buttercream does make for easy decorating and smoothing. icon_smile.gif

nlh Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 7:55pm

I think they are making a trans fat free version?

Sure people say the Crisco frosting is good, but it's not anywhere near the level of sophistication a true buttercream frosting has.

It doesn't matter what flavors are added to it, the Crisco frostings just taste like tacky, grocery store cakes. It's all sugar and does nothing for the palette.

cakeconfections Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 7:59pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by nlh



Sure people say the Crisco frosting is good, but it's not anywhere near the level of sophistication a true buttercream frosting has.

It doesn't matter what flavors are added to it, the Crisco frostings just taste like tacky, grocery store cakes. It's all sugar and does nothing for the palette.




Have to disagree with you. I dont think the crisco version has anything to do with someone sofistication. I also dont feel that someones taste is less sophisticted. Everyones pallette is different and is all about a persons taste and personal chocie. Not a matter of sophistication.

khs1030 Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 7:59pm

Forgot to ask--do you let clients know if you use almond flavoring? Because I use the real thing, I'm a bit concerned about nut allergies. Not a big deal if it's cake for a select group, but this big cake I have coming up is for a public event. I don't want to send anyone into shock!

khs1030 Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 8:05pm

You know, I may be using the wrong terms here. I checked the recipe I use most and it's mousseline buttercream. It has a silky smooth texture but is sturdy enough to pipe any decorations, including flowers. Does anyone know--are mousseline and swiss the same thing?

And OK, Ironbaker, you know we're all going to be dying to know--what's the secret ingredient?????

Yes, I've seen the new trans-free Crisco, and I think that's what I'll end up using. I want to make some calls on it though. It may not have trans but I'm wondering if it has some other thing that the public just doesn't yet know will kill you. Sigh. The fat in it is fully hydrogenated, and I just don't know how that compares to partially. I'll let y'all know--for those who care!--if I get any good info on it....

MariaLovesCakes Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 8:08pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by khs1030

Forgot to ask--do you let clients know if you use almond flavoring? Because I use the real thing, I'm a bit concerned about nut allergies. Not a big deal if it's cake for a select group, but this big cake I have coming up is for a public event. I don't want to send anyone into shock!




Yes, I do. I did a couple of cakes for my daughter's school and told the teacher that I used almond extract in the icing... Just in case there were any allergies concerns...

But I have to remind myself to tell people that are not used to the type of cakes I make that I use almond extract, just in case.

Again, people from Puerto Rico are so used to it, that they assume I am using it. If they don't want it, they asked me to leave it out...

MariaLovesCakes Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 8:24pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by nlh

I think they are making a trans fat free version?

Sure people say the Crisco frosting is good, but it's not anywhere near the level of sophistication a true buttercream frosting has.

It doesn't matter what flavors are added to it, the Crisco frostings just taste like tacky, grocery store cakes. It's all sugar and does nothing for the palette.




Oh, boy, I am hurt... icon_sad.gificon_cry.gif I have had people that used to buy store made cakes and then ate my cakes and they said that mine was much more high quality tasting than the grocery store type.

My icing tastes really good when I almond/vanilla flavorings to it... So, I have to disagree that cakes made with Crisco taste tacky and like grocery store cakes...

Like someone else said, it all a matter of taste and preference.

potatocakes Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 8:25pm

Yes, Ironbaker, 'fess up! What's the secret ingredient??? icon_lol.gif

And I, too, take a little offense to that last statement by nlh about Crisco icings tasting "tacky". I agree that it's all a matter of personal choice. For example, most people here rave about the MMF and how tasty it is. Personally, I think it's okay, but I would much rather have buttercream. And as for sophistication...maybe sophisticated people don't like Crisco buttercream, but on the same token, there's a lot of "food" that so-called sophisticated people eat that I wouldn't touch if I were starving.

peacockplace Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 8:26pm

nlh, I've got to say that sugar does a lot for my palette!!! I love sweet, sweet! Some people do, some don't.

(eating sugary frosting as I sit here) icon_biggrin.gif

Ironbaker Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 8:38pm

I also have to add that the crisco/butter shortening tastes MUCH better (to me) than the grocery store stuff. My folks can certainly tell the difference.

Secret ingredient = creme bouquet.

Now I have to kill you guys. icon_lol.gif

I'd rather share it with other decorators than customers. Especially since it was shared with me. icon_smile.gif

khs1030 Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 8:44pm

What's creme bouquet? Is it a flavoring--what does it taste like? Thanks for divulging your secret to us!

peacockplace Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 8:52pm

Ironbaker, you'll have to find us first!!! LOL
Sounds Yummy!

MariaLovesCakes Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 8:52pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ironbaker

I also have to add that the crisco/butter shortening tastes MUCH better (to me) than the grocery store stuff. My folks can certainly tell the difference.

Secret ingredient = creme bouquet.

Now I have to kill you guys. icon_lol.gif

I'd rather share it with other decorators than customers. Especially since it was shared with me. icon_smile.gif




Do you have to go to a specialty store or can you get at a regular supermakert?

Ironbaker Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 8:56pm

Yes, it is a flavoring. I get it at a cake store here, it's the only place locally that I know of that carries it.

You can find it online at a few places if you search. It's sort of a lemony-mix. I've also seen a Creme Royal but haven't tried it yet.

I was told to only add a few drops in...I add 4-5 drops. I haven't tried it alone or as a major flavoring yet.(In place of almond or the butter) It has a nice smell to it. A fragrant buttercream is just as important as a good tasting one. The almond/butter/creme mixture smells nice.

adven68 Posted 19 Jul 2005 , 11:52pm

Is Creme bouquet for the sophisticated or the non-sophisticated palette?

adven68 Posted 20 Jul 2005 , 2:24am

I'm sorry...I was trying to be cute....but I do think that everyone has different taste and one that is not necesserily yours should not be categorized as anything but a difference of opinion. Thanks

peacockplace Posted 20 Jul 2005 , 3:25am

LOL adven68, I agree!

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