CakemanOH Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 3:29am
post #1 of

Recently on a secret tips post I mentioned that 6x powdered sugar is better than 10x powdered sugar for icing. I received a few PM's on this so I thought I would share my research on the subject to help everyone.

Here is a blurb to back up my statement above from The Sugar Bible. As you can see the finer Powder Sugar is the more corn starch they need to add to make it hopefully not lump. At that point it is less than suitable to use for non cooked items such as icing. 6x and 4 x are commercial grade and will make a better icing that is more stable, temp stable, less gritty and clumpy, better tasting due to texture and less starch. Exact quote is:

"As might be expected, the finer the granulation, the greater the tendency of the sugar to lump, which explains why cornstarch is added to absorb any moisture from the air before the sugar can. The cornstarch adds what is perceived as a floury taste and makes powdered sugar less suitable than granulated sugar for use with ingredients that are not to be cooked. Powdered sugar comes in four degrees of fineness: 10xx, the finest; 10x, available in supermarkets; and 6x and 4x, both of which are available commercially."

34 replies
Melvira Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 3:39am
post #2 of

Thanks for this information!! Is C&H (my usual brand) 10X? Hey, I could get off my fanny and go look at the package, but that would require leaving CC for like three minutes! hahahah! Thanks again!

dldbrou Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 3:56am
post #3 of

I guess I'll have to go check also. Don't say anything while I'm gone.

dldbrou Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 3:59am
post #4 of

I'm back. Darn my sugar is 10X also. Who sells the 6X? What brand? I usually buy Domino. Thanks

CakemanOH Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 4:04am
post #5 of

I get 25# boxes from GFS for $12. A lot more and cheaper than buying the 10x 2# bags.

dldbrou Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 4:06am
post #6 of

Please excuse my ignorance, but what is GFS?

CakemanOH Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 4:08am
post #7 of

GFS is a bulk store. I believe it stands for Gordon Food Service but it is just called GFS.

dldbrou Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 4:10am
post #8 of

Okay, I look and see if they have a website. Thanks

playingwithsugar Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 4:11am
post #9 of

Hey, CakemanOH, thanks for sharing that information with us. I have read so many conflicting articles in forum posts and textbooks on this very subject.

I agree that the cornstarch leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to the finished icing product, but I found the 6x sugar to be too gritty for my taste. Do you have a recipe from that book that offers a smooth textured buttercream?

Also, how does 6x sugar do when trying to pipe it through a fine tube, like a 0 or 1?

It is unfortunate that superfine (castor) sugar is so expensive, otherwise I would use that in my icing instead. Do they have a method for making superfine out of regular granulated table sugar?

Thanks again!

Theresa icon_smile.gif

dldbrou Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 4:13am

I forgot to say that the only bulk store around here is Sams Club. I guess I'll check there also.

CakemanOH Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 4:14am

Actually 6 x powder sugar used with Hi Ratio shortening is the best texture you can get out of an icing. You cannot use crisco with 10x or 6 x and expect a non gritty icing. Hope that helps.

krysoco Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 4:17am

Thanks. I use 6x. I bought it at Sam's. I sift everything though no matter what.

playingwithsugar Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 4:17am

Well, that explains it. Hi-ratio shortening is only available here in 5O lb blocks. Do you know if it can be used in pastry, also, or is it just an icing shortening? It would not be worth it to me to purchase it unless it could be multi-tasked. I normally use French Buttercream icing because of the grittiness, but I would like to have a recipe around that doesn't need refrigeration.

Theresa icon_smile.gif

JanH Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 5:34am

I have made CakemanOH's, hi-ratio shortening with the 6x sugar (added in 1 stick butter, and creme bouquet) and it was immediately perfect for use as frosting or filling.

I had previously used the 10x exclusively, and found that my frosting/fillings were often gritty or had texture issues which improved tremendously upon "resting" for about 24 hrs.

I wondered what was wrong with the recipes or with my technique/s.

Now I know it wasn't the recipes or the technique/s - it was the powdered sugar!

mamacc Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 1:18pm

So, what does the hi ratio shortening do to the 6x to keep it from being too gritty??

Courtney

patton78 Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 1:28pm

tmigra-

If a recipe calls for superfine sugar, I just put regular granulated suger in my food processor which results in a very fine sugar.

Melvira Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 1:45pm

I did finally check last night and C&H doesn't say what X it is. Odd. At least, not on the package that I have, or in a place that is obvious to me! Haha! I have heard so many good things about Hi-ratio shortening, but I can't find it around here. I know you can order it online, but I have had trouble finding that, too.

playingwithsugar Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 2:02pm

Hey, Melvira, see if there is a bakery or restaurant supply store that will sell to you if you buy in bulk. I recently found out that there is a bakery supply store that will sell to me, unlicensed, for cash or check only, and I have to go pick my order up.

The one near me sells the hi-ratio shortening, but I must buy 50 lbs. That is why I asked about using it for other purposes. So far, no answer.

Theresa icon_smile.gif

Melvira Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 2:09pm

Hi Theresa! Our local restaurant supply store only sells Crisco. Bummer! I think some of that high end specialty stuff is too high falootin' for these Iowans! hahaha! Kidding! I won't give up! And I don't know about using the shortening for other uses. Sorry, wish I had the info!

puzzlegut Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 3:14pm

CakemanOH: With the 6x powdered sugar, do you have to sift it more than once? Also, do you use 6x powdered sugar for all of your baking, including cookie or candy recipes? This is a little off topic, but in your BC recipe, you use white icing base. Where do you get it from and does it go by a specific brand name? I've tried looking online for it and the only place I can find it is a Sugarcraft and after all the negative things I heard about them, I don't think I would want to risk ordering from them.

tmriga: As far as I know, you can use hi-ratio shortening for all of your baking (cakes, icing, cookies, etc). Besides buttercream, the only thing else I've tried it with is in my chocolate chip cookies and they tasted pretty good.

JanH Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 4:24pm

mamacc,

The hi-ratio improves the mouth feel of the buttercream - you don't get that Crisco greasy residue left in your mouth.

It's the 6x sugar that improves the performance of any frosting recipe by eliminating the gritty or lumpy aspects of using powdered sugar.

puzzlegut,

If you can use 40# (item #711/Snow White Base) of icing base:

www.nationalflavors.com

sells it for $54.40

kdhoffert Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 10:39pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by Melvira

I did finally check last night and C&H doesn't say what X it is. Odd. At least, not on the package that I have, or in a place that is obvious to me! Haha! I have heard so many good things about Hi-ratio shortening, but I can't find it around here. I know you can order it online, but I have had trouble finding that, too.




http://www.countrykitchensa.com/catalog/mini.aspx?T=1&SubCatId=1069

scoobam Posted 7 Nov 2006 , 11:36pm

CakeManOH.... do you find your icing base at GFS as well??? I just realized I have one of these stores 30 min from here and have been wanting to try 6x for a while now.

Thanks so much for sharing this info!!

puzzlegut Posted 9 Nov 2006 , 1:53am

When I went to GFS a few months ago, I tried asking them if they had it. But since I didn't exactly know what the icing base was or any information about it, they couldn't really help find it. If anyone knows of a brand name for it or an item #, that would really help. I'm going to GFS on Friday to check out the powdered sugar and if I can find out more about the icing base, I can see if they have it and order some.

whitgent Posted 9 Nov 2006 , 2:07am

wesson makes a hi ratio shortening called super quick blend, which is what i use with icing base at my bakery. you can use it without the icing base, it works great. we order it from sysco and us foods, if anyone has acces to someone who can get it for them.

cakemommy Posted 9 Nov 2006 , 3:26am

Okay, so should I completely give up on cakes all together now that I've read this thread? I'm not trying to go all over darnnation trying to find the most perfect "fine" sugar! It's not that easy trying to find items that are not sold in local grocery stores. I certainly don't want my icing to be considered sub-standard just because I use C&H Powdered Sugar. I really feel out of touch now. thumbsdown.gif



Amy

CakemanOH Posted 9 Nov 2006 , 5:34am

Cakemommy.....These ingredients are just a preference and not a necessity. I like taking my stuff to another level and trying different things but it does not make anyone elses product sub std. If it was not handy to me I doubt I would run all over carnation lookiing for it as well. I get my alpine and icing base from a local cake supply store and GFS is only 10 miles away and I pass it on my way home quite a bit. Since it is close and readily available I choose to but it. Plus it is very cheap to buy a 25# box pf PS for $12. The 2# bags of PS at Walmart is 1.38. That is over double my cost to buy that way.

To answer questions on the icing base I get it locally from a cake supply store. You could try and do a goofle for angel white or brite white and I believe you would get a few different ordering options. I choose to use it because it adds stability, taste and makes the icing brite white and fluffy. I would use it even when I would use crisco or all butter.

CakemanOH Posted 9 Nov 2006 , 5:39am
Quote:
Quote:

CakemanOH: With the 6x powdered sugar, do you have to sift it more than once? Also, do you use 6x powdered sugar for all of your baking, including cookie or candy recipes?




I do not sift it at all because it is not needed. The combination of the alpine and icing base moistens the PS just right so there is no grit or clumps. Grit and clumps form from too much starch in powdered sugar and because crisco and butter cannot absorb as well the high quantity of sugar and liquid as well as alpine. Hi-Ratio is like a sponge.

Phoov Posted 9 Nov 2006 , 5:43am

I use CH powdered sugar....don't sift....and my buttercream is wonderful. I use half butter and half Crisco.

puzzlegut Posted 9 Nov 2006 , 6:10am

I wonder if the 6x powdered sugar would still mix okay if I use the hi-ratio shortening (Sweetex) and not the icing base (since I'm having difficulty getting a hold of it).

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