Hello all! Last night in class I pull out my little jar of violet food coloring so I could make some flowers. I start stirring my icing and it's turning blue...hmm...I'll add some more. I grab another toothpick and add more. Still blue. My friend next to me adds some to her icing and it turns a dark purple! She was using the basic Wilton class buttercream recipe while I had made a lemon raspberry buttercream (found on here!) All of my ingredients were white or clear so my icing was white. The only thing I can think of is that it was due to the flavorings I used. Anyone know why/how this happened and if there's any way to prevent it in the future?
Did you use milk in your buttercream recipe?
I've been teaching Wilton classes for 11 years and never had an issue with violet icing, until Crisco changed their formula to being trans-fat free. The new TFF formula does not allow the icing to turn violet unless milk is used in the recipe (anywhere from skim milk to heavy cream will work, as long as it is cow's milk and not soy milk). Icing made with water will turn the most beautiful shade of periwinkle blue, but not violet.
Weird, but I've seen it happen innumerable times over the past 3-4 years since Crisco changed its formula, and using milk is the fix.
It's the lemon and it's bleaching it out.
I used water, not milk. And yes, it did turn a very pretty shade of blue! Hmm...interesting. I will try again sometime and use milk if I think I want purple.
Yup, it's the lemon.
Where did you find the recipe for the lemon raspberry buttercream? Did it call for actual lemon juice or just lemon extract?
I searched the recipe gallery here and could not find it.
Here's the recipe I used
2 cups butter (you can substitute some Crisco if you like)
8 cups 10X sugar
1/4 - 1/3 cup water (you can use milk if you like)
2 capfuls Raspberry extract (McCormicks makes this)
2 capfuls lemon extract
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
I changed a couple of things in it. I used all Crisco, no butter. I did use lemon extract and raspberry extract. I threw in some butter flavoring (clear) as well since I wasn't using any actual butter. It tastes great, just a little off on the color!
That sounds yummy! Since you did not use lemon juice (which has a very low pH), I would put money on the culprit being the water, not the extract. Lemon extract is not acidic.
I use Watkin's lemon extract and am able to achieve violet icing when the BC is made with milk.
Next time sub milk for water, and you should be able to make your icing violet, unless the raspberry extract is not clear and interferes with the coloring of the icing.