Is Smbc Or Imbc Worth It?

Decorating By luminajd Updated 12 Jan 2010 , 6:52pm by love2makecakes

luminajd Posted 15 Aug 2009 , 12:50am
post #1 of 66

To make BC I either do all shortening with powderd sugar or a mix of shortening and butter. I dont like the idea of taking the time to heat stuff on the stove, use a thermometer, etc to make IMBC or SMBC. I have never tasted either. Is it worth my time to make a batch? It is just as easy to pipe flowers and such with?
Thanks for answering a newbie question

65 replies
PinkZiab Posted 15 Aug 2009 , 12:57am
post #2 of 66

In a word: Yes. I love meringue buttercreams and they are my staple. I only do a PS-based BC as a special request (and they really need to beg lol). I don't really do a lot of BC piped flowers and that style (just my preference), but I do fine it easy to pipe borders and fine details with. I actually don't use a thermometer for either type... I learned to do both by touch (although the IMBC requires a bowl of ice water for that lol), so I don't find it to be much of a hassle.

costumeczar Posted 15 Aug 2009 , 1:00am
post #3 of 66

I think that it tastes a lot better, not so sweet and no shortening in it, so it has a lower melting point and feels more like a whipped cream as far as mouth feel goes. Make sure that you don't use salted butter in it, though, that makes it taste WAY too buttery for some reason and ruins it.

It's fine for piping, but you can't smooth it out the same way that you do shortening-based buttercreams. You have to get good at using the spatulas and bench scrapers to smooth things out when you use it to ice cakes.

drakegore Posted 15 Aug 2009 , 1:41am
post #4 of 66

it tastes soooooo good. i bet one you try it, you will never want to go back.

i like smbc which i think is easier than powdered sugar buttercreams and is a lot less messy (which is just a bonus).

LaBellaFlor Posted 15 Aug 2009 , 3:05am
post #5 of 66

I love IMBC/SMBC and they are definetly worth trying once. I think they're easier to make as well. Also, I don't have a thermometer, I do it by sight.

cylstrial Posted 15 Aug 2009 , 10:05pm
post #6 of 66

You should definitely try it. I love SMBC! It's so delicious and easy to make. I think it's easy to pipe with - but I haven't ever tried to do flowers with it. I don't think that it would work well for me.

3GCakes Posted 15 Aug 2009 , 10:18pm
post #7 of 66

It's more than worth it.

The work you put into the front-end....(grease-free utensils, heating sugar) pay off in the end with the no-scrubbing of shortening off of your utensils. IMBC simply melts away. I put most of my stuff straight into the dishwasher.

The texture and mouth-feel is awesome. I also add white chocolate to my IMBC....which I think stabilizes it and takes it a step away from tasting too much like butter.

I am not a scratch-baker, I generally use WASC. I almost always ice my cakes using IMBC with white chocolate.

I find it hard to make shortening taste like butter, even with flavorings. Butter has a taste and mouthfeel all its own.

I am also like PinkZiab, that I will make a PS based buttercream, if my friends insist, but I'd rather not. I like to use all butter then, too.

PattyT Posted 15 Aug 2009 , 10:30pm
post #8 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cakemom777

It's more than worth it.

The work you put into the front-end....(grease-free utensils, heating sugar) pay off in the end with the no-scrubbing of shortening off of your utensils. IMBC simply melts away. I put most of my stuff straight into the dishwasher.

The texture and mouth-feel is awesome. I also add white chocolate to my IMBC....which I think stabilizes it and takes it a step away from tasting too much like butter.




I'm a huge SMBC fan so add me to the "yes" votes. I agree with Cakemom777 about the cleanup. My dishwasher does most of the work.

Cakemom777, can I ask how much white chocolate you use? I've managed to put about 6 oz milk chocolate in my SMBC (Nick Maglieri's recipe - 5 whites) and it was heaven. Wondering if it would hold a little more if it's white chocolate instead?

Thanks Pat

TOMAY Posted 15 Aug 2009 , 10:45pm
post #9 of 66

Can you sub margarine for butter in these icings and can you make them chocolate with coco powder?

jillangel Posted 15 Aug 2009 , 11:20pm
post #10 of 66

I just made IMBC for the first time today. Easier than it sounds and I'm pretty dang impressed. I'll see how everyone likes it because it is definitely a different taste/texture than the sweet buttercream they are used to. I say you gotta try it at least once!

singhscakes Posted 15 Aug 2009 , 11:41pm
post #11 of 66

Definetely worth it. I'm new to cake decorating but the few times I have made Swiss meringue it far surpasses the ps buttercream.

__Jamie__ Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 12:10am
post #12 of 66

SMBC snob here. It's pretty much perfect. If I haaaaave to use shortening based, I learned to use a hi ratio shortening recipe.

varika Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 12:48am
post #13 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by cylstrial

You should definitely try it. I love SMBC! It's so delicious and easy to make. I think it's easy to pipe with - but I haven't ever tried to do flowers with it. I don't think that it would work well for me.




The latest pic in my gallery, the basket cake, is all IMBC. The trick to doing flowers out of it is to pop them in the freezer for ten minutes before applying them to the cake; they get nice and solid and you can pick them up with your fingers if you need to, but once they sit on the cake for five minutes, they're back to the wonderful soft consistency of room-temperature IMBC.

I find it a DREAM to pipe with, though I have some trouble with roses and anything requiring a really stiff BC. The basketweave on the cake was a little tough, too, but that's because I always seem to have trouble when I add chocolate to my SMBC or IMBC--it tends to make little tiny "chocolate chips" in the icing, and clogs my tips up. I don't know what I can do about that because I'm not sure what I'm doing to make it happen in the first place...

I'm not a complete snob, because American BC is just so much easier and the recipe I use for it tastes good without being too sweet--and salted butter seems to be the key, for some reason--but I really do love IMBC and SMBC when I do do them!

costumeczar Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 1:04am
post #14 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by varika

Quote:
Originally Posted by cylstrial

You should definitely try it. I love SMBC! It's so delicious and easy to make. I think it's easy to pipe with - but I haven't ever tried to do flowers with it. I don't think that it would work well for me.



I find it a DREAM to pipe with, though I have some trouble with roses and anything requiring a really stiff BC.
I'm not a complete snob, because American BC is just so much easier and the recipe I use for it tastes good without being too sweet--and salted butter seems to be the key, for some reason--but I really do love IMBC and SMBC when I do do them!




At the risk of being accused of cake heresy, I'll suggest adding a little PS buttercream to the IMBC to stabilize it for piping. You'll retain most of the mouthfeel but it makes it a little stiffer. I've seen people pipe with it and have no problem, though. If you do plan on piping flowers, you might want to make a stiffer meringue by heating the sugar a little hotter than you normally would before you add it to the meringue (for IMBC).

costumeczar Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 1:05am
post #15 of 66

double post

varika Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 1:18am
post #16 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by costumeczar

Quote:
Originally Posted by varika

Quote:
Originally Posted by cylstrial

You should definitely try it. I love SMBC! It's so delicious and easy to make. I think it's easy to pipe with - but I haven't ever tried to do flowers with it. I don't think that it would work well for me.



I find it a DREAM to pipe with, though I have some trouble with roses and anything requiring a really stiff BC.
I'm not a complete snob, because American BC is just so much easier and the recipe I use for it tastes good without being too sweet--and salted butter seems to be the key, for some reason--but I really do love IMBC and SMBC when I do do them!



At the risk of being accused of cake heresy, I'll suggest adding a little PS buttercream to the IMBC to stabilize it for piping. You'll retain most of the mouthfeel but it makes it a little stiffer. I've seen people pipe with it and have no problem, though. If you do plan on piping flowers, you might want to make a stiffer meringue by heating the sugar a little hotter than you normally would before you add it to the meringue (for IMBC).




*GASP!* HERETIC!

....there, now that that's out of the way, thanks. I did wonder about doing the PS in there to stiffen it up, but I decided that by gawd I love the pansies and the mums and they are going gine, so to hell with roses. I will probably try that next time I make IMBC, though. I will also give the stiffer-meringue thing a try, too. Thanks!

MissCathcart Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 1:31am
post #17 of 66

I'm a weirdo, and like to see words spelled out. Why do we have to use just letters?

Anyway, Italian Meringue Buttercream is fabulous. I have gotten so many wonderful comments on my cakes, and it always starts with the Icing. They think it's something like whipped cream. My husband actually said it was Cool Whip, can you imagine? After all that work he tells them it's cool whip! I try to keep him away from the cakes. He said my yellow cake, with Italian Meringue Buttercream was Banana cake. He has an issue with his taste buds. I'm rambling.


Here's the recipe I use. It's from the famous Cake Love bakery in New York. I love demonstrations.


noni12601 Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 1:36am
post #18 of 66

has anyone tried making smbc by starting out with fluffy boiled icing recipe then just adding the butter .would it be same as smbc i have never made smbc before

__Jamie__ Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 1:38am
post #19 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by TOMAY

Can you sub margarine for butter in these icings and can you make them chocolate with coco powder?




Margarine=no. You need to get butter. And no cocoa powder. Melted room temp good quality chocolate.

MissCathcart Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 1:47am
post #20 of 66

-Jamie-

I follow the Mob Father too.

__Jamie__ Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 2:36am
post #21 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by MissCathcart

-Jamie-

I follow the Mob Father too.




thumbs_up.gif

ceshell Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 7:56am
post #22 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by noni12601

has anyone tried making smbc by starting out with fluffy boiled icing recipe then just adding the butter .would it be same as smbc i have never made smbc before




Yes and no. It would actually be essentially the same as IMBC but with different ingredient ratios (for example, my IMBC recipe calls for 1c sugar, no corn syrup, less water, but uses 5 egg whites). Anyway, IMBC=SMBC but is instead cooked via the method you just described.

Note: opinions vary as to whether or not the hot sugar syrup cooks the egg whites to a safe temperature. For that reason, I use pasteurized egg whites. Since SMBC cooks the ew themselves, there is no uncertainty about using fresh whites.

ZlatkaT Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 1:26pm
post #23 of 66

SMBC vs IMBC is the taste really different, or similar. It looks to me the recipes are very close? Never made either of them. But sure am going to.

dailey Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 2:10pm
post #24 of 66

i used smbc and like it better then imbc just because its easier to make (they taste the same to me). i loathe american buttercream...so darn sweet!

3GCakes Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 2:17pm
post #25 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by PattyT

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cakemom777

It's more than worth it.

The work you put into the front-end....(grease-free utensils, heating sugar) pay off in the end with the no-scrubbing of shortening off of your utensils. IMBC simply melts away. I put most of my stuff straight into the dishwasher.

The texture and mouth-feel is awesome. I also add white chocolate to my IMBC....which I think stabilizes it and takes it a step away from tasting too much like butter.



I'm a huge SMBC fan so add me to the "yes" votes. I agree with Cakemom777 about the cleanup. My dishwasher does most of the work.

Cakemom777, can I ask how much white chocolate you use? I've managed to put about 6 oz milk chocolate in my SMBC (Nick Maglieri's recipe - 5 whites) and it was heaven. Wondering if it would hold a little more if it's white chocolate instead?

Thanks Pat




Hello,

I use a recipe based on 8 egg whites because I use pasteurized, and the small carton contains the equivalent of 8 eggs.
I put anywhere from 8-12 ounces of melted, cooled white chocolate. I use Baker's chocolate.
Once you start making it for people, they'll act like they are eating some exotic delicacy. Seriously, IMBC made a me a rock star in my family and circle of friends.

luminajd Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 2:49pm
post #26 of 66

Okay, you guys have convinced me to try IMBC (I watched the Cake Love youtube video and I love when I can make something while watching the directions)
Questions:
If I wanted to add melted chocolate, I melt it, let it cool to room temp, then beat it in at the end?
Do I have to use superfine sugar? I dont think I have seen that in stores in my area
Now I will have to try and find my whisk attachment thingie...hhmm...

baking_fool Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 3:28pm
post #27 of 66

Hello I have to say I love the IMBC and SMBC. They taste so good and are so smooth and have such a unique flavor.
Also I have just bearly started using French Buttercreme and I almost love the flavor more, it is made with egg yolks and whold eggs so it wont make a pure white icing but the flavor is so good. icon_lol.gif

baking_fool Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 3:28pm
post #28 of 66

Hello I have to say I love the IMBC and SMBC. They taste so good and are so smooth and have such a unique flavor.
Also I have just bearly started using French Buttercreme and I almost love the flavor more, it is made with egg yolks and whold eggs so it wont make a pure white icing but the flavor is so good. icon_lol.gif

EatSomeCake Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 3:39pm
post #29 of 66

I love American buttercream for frosting and decorating the outside(it decorates far better in my opinion, I uses Sugarshack's recipe). I like to use Italian buttercream for fillings because it is so rich and if you frost the outside with it you wind up with a very shiny cake and a more matted appearance with regular bc. IMBC is quicker to make than SMBC in my opinion and tastes very similar....

I'm in the process of licensing my home kitchen and have found out from others that the IMBC is a no go because it is "potentially hazardous" although Margaret Braun says she leaves hers out for 2 or so days non refrigerated at a cool indoor temp. She would have to with all that decorating!

I know Cake Divas and Merci Beaucoup Cakes on the Amazing Wedding Cakes show use Italian Meringue BC exclusively in and out, they even pipe with it...

rmelendrez Posted 16 Aug 2009 , 3:54pm
post #30 of 66

Thanks everyone for the fantastic 411...I'll give this a go today...one question...Due to the butter factor, how well does SMBC/IMBC hold up in warm/hot/humid weather?

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