erincc Posted 6 Aug 2010 , 6:01pm

I feel like I'm losing my mind, so bear with me!!!

I'm making a 3-tier wedding cake for tomorrow. I made the frosting yesterday to do the crumb coat. I like to do IMBC but decided to go with Sugarshack's buttercream because the humidity here has been awful lately- we've had tons of rain. I've always had success with this BC. I did use generic shortening, but I've done that before with no problem. The shortening did seem a little soft when I made it. The frosting turned out really soft. I added a ton more PS. Still soft, and started looking a little grainy. I decided to scrap it and make my regular IMBC. It was warm in my kitchen and so of course it turned into a puddle! icon_cry.gif I put it in the fridge to set up. It never really firmed up much. So in a last-ditch effort last night I decided to mix the 2 frostings together. It tastes great, and nice texture. But still too soft. I refrigerated overnight. It firmed up a little, but when I went to frost my cake today it slid off the cake! icon_eek.gif I have NEVER had that happen! So I scrape it off, and I've been trying to add more PS to the rest of the frosting. It's firming a little but now looking gritty! What can I do? Start over with a different recipe? HELP!


PS. I've got the AC cranked in here, I'm cold! Wouldn't you think that would help???

30 replies
PiccoloChellie Posted 6 Aug 2010 , 6:17pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by erincc

I did use generic shortening, but I've done that before with no problem. The shortening did seem a little soft when I made it.




Just a thought, check the container of shortening and make sure it's pure vegetable shortening. I'm finding some 'generic' shortenings are veg and meat fat, which just does not work in icing at all! I accidentally bought a container of that a while back and it was much softer than veg shortening.
The softness issues and the grainy part made me think this might be your problem.

If you've got meat fat shortening, you'll need to start over with different shortening. Have you tried indydebi's recipe?
http://cakecentral.com/recipes/6992/indydebis-crisco-based-buttercream-icing
Use name-brand Crisco just to be on the safe side. That stuff holds up SO well in extreme heat.

erincc Posted 6 Aug 2010 , 6:24pm

No, it's pure vegetable shortening. I think I will try Indydebi's next time I need a wedding cake during the heat, because I've heard so many good things about how it holds up. Then again, I've never had trouble with Sugarshack's before so I don't know what is going on! It think it *must* have something to do with the shortening.

leah_s Posted 6 Aug 2010 , 6:42pm

No trans fats in the shortening I'll bet.

lilyankee5688 Posted 6 Aug 2010 , 6:48pm

I ONLY use IndyDebyi's BC. I live in SC and its never failed me.. its sooo good!

erincc Posted 6 Aug 2010 , 6:55pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by leah_s

No trans fats in the shortening I'll bet.




It has 2.5g per serving (tablespoon). Is that not enough? I read that if you can't get Hi-Ratio, to use a store brand with trans-fats. Ugh, next time I will just order the HR!!!

kansaslaura Posted 6 Aug 2010 , 7:08pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by erincc

Quote:
Originally Posted by leah_s

No trans fats in the shortening I'll bet.



It has 2.5g per serving (tablespoon). Is that not enough? I read that if you can't get Hi-Ratio, to use a store brand with trans-fats. Ugh, next time I will just order the HR!!!




Where did you find, and what is the brand of the grocery store shortening that still has transfat?? I use Hi-Ratio, but have looked until my eyeballs were hanging out a few months back when I ran out--and could not find any shortening in stores w/trans fat. Please share, I know a few people who would love to buy some.

erincc Posted 6 Aug 2010 , 7:09pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by kansaslaura

Quote:
Originally Posted by erincc

Quote:
Originally Posted by leah_s

No trans fats in the shortening I'll bet.



It has 2.5g per serving (tablespoon). Is that not enough? I read that if you can't get Hi-Ratio, to use a store brand with trans-fats. Ugh, next time I will just order the HR!!!



Where did you find, and what is the brand of the grocery store shortening that still has transfat?? I use Hi-Ratio, but have looked until my eyeballs were hanging out a few months back when I ran out--and could not find any shortening in stores w/trans fat. Please share, I know a few people who would love to buy some.




Our local grocery store brand, Hy-Vee. I think you have Hy-vee's in Kanas?

erincc Posted 6 Aug 2010 , 7:12pm

well, I got the frosting to firm up after adding more PS. Got it on the biggest tier and it looks not so great, a little grainy. I'm letting it crust and hopefully using Viva to smooth will help. The bride is a friend and super sweet so I don't think she'll say anything but I don't want her to be disappointed. At least I know the cake part will taste good- WBH golden butter cake with dulce de leche filling- yum!

thanks for listening & the advice!

rubydasch Posted 6 Aug 2010 , 7:19pm

The same thing happened to me yesterday. I used BakeRite shortening in the Wilton recipe for a small cake yesterday. I've bought that brand of shortening twice before, and both times the consistency was very firm, almost hard. We moved and I bought it at a different store. This time the consistency was very soft -- way too soft. It made a big difference in the icing. I don't know what to do to fix it (sorry). But it's weird how the same brand of shortening could be so different on two different occasions.

leah_s Posted 6 Aug 2010 , 9:43pm

You guiy are reading the transfat line on the label, right? Not just looking at total fats? Because what you're describing is exactly the way transfats fat shortening vesus non-transfat shortening both act. (With TF firm, goes on well. Non TF too soft and literally slides off the cake.)

kansaslaura Posted 6 Aug 2010 , 10:48pm

You took the question right out of my mouth, Leah! I have a can of regular Crisco on the shelf and I cannot believe how soft that stuff it, there is no scooping out, you can nearly pour it if it's gotten warm at all.

Double check those lables, make sure you're seeing TRANSfat--not totalfat or saturated fat...

erincc Posted 7 Aug 2010 , 1:17am
Quote:
Originally Posted by leah_s

You guiy are reading the transfat line on the label, right? Not just looking at total fats? Because what you're describing is exactly the way transfats fat shortening vesus non-transfat shortening both act. (With TF firm, goes on well. Non TF too soft and literally slides off the cake.)



Here's the label:
http://www.zeer.com/Food-Products/Hy-Vee-Vegetable-Shortening/40288081216457010121649c867b6722

It does say trans-fats. But that does sound like what you are describing! I'm going to stick with Hi-Ratio from now on!

kansaslaura Posted 7 Aug 2010 , 1:46am

Wonder how long they're going to leave it that way. They do have Hy-Vee's in KS, but not in my area. There is one my daughter goes to--she cakes occasionally. I'll have to tell her to pick up a few cans while she can.

gram122 Posted 11 Aug 2010 , 3:26am

I have been having trouble with my icing also.....I contacted crisco and they told me they no longer make crisco with trans fats....I asked them why we cant have the option of trans fats or NO trans fats and they abruptly said the crisco with trans fats is not to be produced anymore.
I did find a shortening with 2.5 trans fats but it is still too soft.
I found it at Food For Less.
Carole

gram122 Posted 11 Aug 2010 , 3:43am

where is a good site to purchase the HR?
Carole

BethLS Posted 11 Aug 2010 , 4:56pm

Howdy,

Sorry to the OP, that I don't have any words of wisdom to offer.

Last year I created a 10 sheet cake, stacked/doweled/carved cake to recplicate a school built in the 1800's that was torn down the month before the cake-competition in August.

My cake was OUTSIDE, in 90 degree humid heat, only under a cheap covered tent, from 8am until 6pm. The cake did not lean, it did not melt. It was iced in my grandmothers BC icing (she was a caker for over 50 years and during the depression) and then covered in MMF.

However, I am just merely curious as to why the HR is best? This is my basic BC recipe, super, super easy and has never failed me. I use the wal-mart store brand great value all-veggie shortening.

So, for anyone interested, here is mine! (thanks grandma, RIP!)

2lbs 10X
1/2 C Shortening
1/2 (1 stick) softened MARGARINE
1tbsp vanilla (or whatever flavoring)
Dash of Milk if the consistency is too think

Mix together the shortening and margarine. Add in vanilla. Slowly incorportate the sugar. Like I said, never had any problems!

gram122 Posted 11 Aug 2010 , 9:44pm

what kind of shortening did you use???did it contain TRANS FATS?
all the newly processed shortening has NO trans fats and will not stabilize
Carole

JohnnyCakes1966 Posted 11 Aug 2010 , 10:35pm

Wal-Mart's "Great Value" brand of All-Vegetable Shortening has 3 grams of TF per serving. But be careful...Wal-Mart also has shortening that either has no TF at all or less than the All-Veggie. (The cans look the same, except the All-Veggie shortening shows a piece of pie on the label where the other shortening shows, I believe, a piece of fried chicken.) icon_lol.gif

Curious thing about the argument that the shortening must contain TF: IndyDebi uses the "new" Crisco without TF and swears by it. She has said the lack of TF doesn't make a bit of difference in how her buttercream holds up. icon_confused.gif

kansaslaura Posted 11 Aug 2010 , 10:51pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnnyCakes1966

Wal-Mart's "Great Value" brand of All-Vegetable Shortening has 3 grams of TF per serving. But be careful...Wal-Mart also has shortening that either has no TF at all or less than the All-Veggie. (The cans look the same, except the All-Veggie shortening shows a piece of pie on the label where the other shortening shows, I believe, a piece of fried chicken.) icon_lol.gif

Curious thing about the argument that the shortening must contain TF: IndyDebi uses the "new" Crisco without TF and swears by it. She has said the lack of TF doesn't make a bit of difference in how her buttercream holds up. icon_confused.gif


I haven't found trans-fat in Wal-Mart shortening for well over a year--Don't tell me it's a regional thing or something...

No matter.. I've got my HR!

BethLS Posted 11 Aug 2010 , 11:03pm

Geez, you got me wanting to get out of work asap and see if mine has TF or not! icon_wink.gif

JohnnyCakes1966 Posted 11 Aug 2010 , 11:15pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by kansaslaura

I haven't found trans-fat in Wal-Mart shortening for well over a year--Don't tell me it's a regional thing or something...




I'm in St. Louis and just bought these tubs about a week ago. Maybe Kansas has stricter regulations on food/trans-fat?? If you're close to Kansas City, you might check a Wal-Mart on the Missouri side. But like I mentioned, they do have 2 kinds and the labels look alike except for fried chicken on one and pie on the other. I thought they were the same until I looked closer and saw that one says All-Vegetable Shortening where the other is just Shortening. It might be worth another look.

I use HR for my wedding cakes, but TF shortening for most others, especially kids birthday cakes/cupcakes. I'd have to charge $1-2 more for my cupcakes if I used HR on them! Hmmmmmmmmm...... icon_evil.gificon_lol.gif

malene541 Posted 11 Aug 2010 , 11:22pm

There are states that have "outlawed" transfats. I believe New York was the first. I saw it on the food network channel.

kansaslaura Posted 11 Aug 2010 , 11:32pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by malene541

There are states that have "outlawed" transfats. I believe New York was the first. I saw it on the food network channel.




I've read that you can't even buy HR in California. I imagine the big bakers are really having a hard time.

gram122 Posted 12 Aug 2010 , 2:48am

Our walmart in Pittsburgh sells OUR VALUE with the piece of cherry pie on the front and it has 0.5 gr trans fat
Its too soft!!
Carole

chrissypie Posted 12 Aug 2010 , 2:54am
Quote:
Originally Posted by malene541

There are states that have "outlawed" transfats. I believe New York was the first. I saw it on the food network channel.




I live in NY and a local grocery store here has a store brand that still has trans fat, 3 g.

Is three grams still little? How many grams does hi ratio have?

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