I recently started working at a local bakery. They use a french buttercream and I'm having a heck of a time getting it smooth on my cakes. I use a crusting buttercream at home and their buttercream does not crust. I don't know the exact recipe they use because I have not been taught yet how to make it, but I do know it contains butter and a simple syrup. I think it also includes shortening, but not sure because wouldn't that make it crust?
Anyway, I am looking for any helpful hints anyone can give me to help me with my smoothing. Viva towels are out, obviously, I really wouldn't be able to use a hot spatula either. I'm such a perfectionist and I hate how my cakes are turning out! I can bring my own tools. Any suggestions?
Shortening wouldn't make a french buttercream crust.
Crusting in an American buttercream is related to the ratios of powdered sugar, fat, and liquid.
Generally, a butter based buttercream can be smoothed beautifully with a warmed spatula/bench scraper.
I usually use a hot spatula at home for my crusting buttercream, but I work next to my stove. I'm not close to anything at work to get my spatula hot. Anyone else have any smoothing/tool recommendations?
You can dip the spatula in a bowl of hot water, quickly wipe it dry, & smooth.
You can hook up a hot pad next to where you're decorating, put a paper towel on it, and heat the spatula on it as necessary.
Can you put a container of hot hot water and a drying towel next to your work area and use 2 spatulas. One would stay in the hot water while you use the other one. Then you would switch out when one cooled off too much? The spatulas wouldn't get as warm as they would over a stove but if the water is hot enough it should work okay.
Or maybe use a heating pad turned up on high (remove the original cloth cover and use a clean kitch towel on it instead). just fold the heating pad over the spatulas to warm them.
Thank you! I will definitely try both suggestions.