Man i havent posted on here in a long time lol. But im having alot of trouble at the moment with my buttercream! Its to do with the icing sugar or confectioners sugar i think you call it over there. When ever i am mixing it it seems to still stay all grainy like and you can feel the grittyness when you eat the icing. Ive not had this problem before and im not doing anything different.
Does anyone know why this could be happening? Ive tried to whip it longer but it hasnt helped at all!
You can try sifting your sugar again to break it up, it may have gotten moisture in your sugar and it is clumping up before you put in with any other ingredients. Has it been humid or rainy? Have you changed shortenings? This can be factors in your grainess.Try that and see if it helps. Anybody else?
From your post I think it isn't as much clumping of the sugar, as the sugar crystals (even the tiny ones in confectioners sugar) aren't dissolved enough. Try to mix longer it longer, test the buttercream between your fingers. It happened to me with the last batch in royal icing - I had to mix it almost twice the time as usually and still had to press it through nylon because some tiny crystal simply wouldn't dissolve.
It could be only this particular batch of sugar - at least I hope
Did you switch brands? Sometimes different brands behave a bit differently. If you have, I'd try your original brand icing sugar and see how that works out.
The problem is most likely that the icing sugar you're using isn't ground finely enough. This actually isn't the first post from your part of the world (Australia-New Zealand) about this. I live in Mexico City and have the same problem. If I'm not mistaken, there's often a rating of fineness on the package. The ideal is 10X. What I find here is usually 6X. I finally found some 10X Domino (brand) powdered sugar imported from the US. Unfortunately this is not a problem you can control (unless you own a sugar mill!). I don't imagine my problem is solved, either, since this kind of importation is sporadic at best. I don't know if putting it bit by bit in a blender or food processor would help, but I guess it's worth a try. I wish you the best of luck in solving this problem, and if you do manage to solve it, please let me know how you did it!
Thanks for your replies. I have tried many different brands to help this but nothings helped. I use to buy a bulk 5kg pack and that stuff was great but then it changed and was alot grainier... I have tried to sift it before mixing. sometimes twice but it still hasnt helped.
Our weather over here doesnt change as much as over there in some places. Normal weather ranged from 12 to 25 degrees celcius so i dont see it being a major problem with that.
I left the mixer going for 30 mins the other day to try and see if that helped and it did a very tiny amount but i dont want to have to have the mixer going for 2 hours for it to work properly!
I might try and go back to the original brand i was using and see if they have the good stuff again. Im not too sure about this whole 6x and 10x thing as over here it doesnt have any of that detail on it. Just says its icing sugar on it.
My only other option is to import icing sugar but thats going to be a major mission and very expensive!
Sorry to rain in the parade here - I have had recently the same problem with "superfine" sugar - I suppose this would be the 10x
I have puffs of sugar if I am not careful - you breathe and there goes cloud of fine sugar. But even then, there is a part of it which will not dissolve. It is so fine that it goes through the fine sieve I have, but you can still feel it in the icing.
Try another brand - I went from superfine back to cheapest brand available here and sift 3x - I throw almost 1/5 of it to extra container and use this in a cake batter. But the rest is better than the superfine I can buy.
Good point, majka. Actually, I think there's a worldwide crisis in icing/confectioner's/powdered sugar terminology that needs to be resolved immediately!!! In the US, superfine sugar is just extra-ground granulated sugar (makes it easier to dissolve in coffee, tea, cake batter, etc.). You can actually make it from regular granulated sugar by putting it in a blender of food processor for about 30 seconds. But yours sounds like what I think of as icing sugar, no matter what it's called. Anyway, I have another suggestion. OTNIC. Have you ever tried to make meringue buttercream (there are several recipes here on CC and some demonstration videos on YouTube or one of those sites. It looks like a real bother to make, but several people say they use nothing else. The thing is, meringue buttercreams use granulated sugar which dissolves completely during the preparation of the icing. The only problem is that it doesn't crust (or so I've heard), so if you need one that does, the meringue variety won't help you. On the other hand, no more worries about the pesky old icing sugar! HTH.
there is a major lack of decorating tools n products over here in NZ i wish i could open my own supplies shop. finding simple things like the meringue powder is impossible!!!! id have to buy overseas or pay triple the price though a nz internet site.
why do they make it so hard