I tried to make Swiss Meringue Buttercream for the first time last night and it did not work right for me. I was using the DyannBakes.com recipe that has 1/2 cup egg white, 1 cup sugar and 3 sticks (12oz) butter. I used the eggbeaters egg whites that come in a carton and a hand-held mixer with a whisk attachment. I followed the recipe, whisked the egg whites, a pinch of salt, and the sugar together in my metal mixing bowl over a pot of simmering water and heated while whisking until the sugar was dissolved. Then I put the bowl on the counter (on a towel bc it was hot) and mixed it with the whisk on med speed. It said to mix it until it was stiff and the bowl was cool. The bowl was cool after about 10 min but the egg whites never got stiff at all. I ended up beating for 30 minutes and there was no change in the stiffness after about 15 min. The mixture looked kind of like marshmallow creme and when I tried to make it form a peak it immediately slumped back down and flattened completely into the bottom. I gave up after 30 min and stuck it in the fridge and went to bed. I didn't want to try adding the 3 sticks of butter and waste them if it was still a soft mushy mess after adding the butter. Does anyone have any suggestions as to why it didn't work? Should I try beating the whites again after it's been refridgerated overnight? Or toss it and try again? I usually just make American buttercream but wanted to try out the SMBC because of all the people that seem to like it so much. Thanks in advance for any help!
You may not have heat it long enough or it could have been the eggwhites you used. I do use cartoned egg whites but not all of them say 'liquid egg whites' as the only ingredient.
I make this kind all the time, I heat until all the sugar is disolved, it is hot to the touch and frothy in the bowl. I put in mixer, start on on low and work my way up to high as it cools. It should make a very stiff meringue. I have in the past had to add a little bit of cream of tartar to get it to this point, but not usually.
With a hand mixer it is going to take a long time. I gave the recipe to my sister and she actually burned out the motor in her hand mixer doing it.
I make SMBC all the time but I have never attempted without my KitchenAid.
I put my egg whites and sugar into a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of boiling water and whisk until the sugar is dissolved, and the mix is as hot as it can be before the egg whites start to cook. I then dump the mix into my KitchenAid with the whisk attachment and put it on high for around 12-13 minutes and by that time I have stiff peaks and the mix is cool. It works for me everytime.
In your case I would probably toss the egg white mixture - but I may be wrong.
Do you have a stand mixer?
It's probably your egg whites, if you used the carton ones. Most of them will not whip to stiff peaks, even if you beat them all year! In fact, I've found this tiny disclaimer on the cartons of about every brand I've run across, saying that they "won't whip to peaks" or "not for meringues" or what have you.
Some people have had luck finding carton egg whites that will whip, but generally speaking... You have to separate real eggs.
Thank you all for your help. I made my cake yesterday and my dad and boyfriend are getting impatient because I won't let them eat it yet lol. So I'm just going to make some of my regular buttercream for now and I will try the SMBC again with regular egg whites sometime later this week. Thanks!