Buttercream Cracks Once Smoothed With Viva Method! Help!

Decorating By annemarie40 Updated 7 Dec 2011 , 3:30pm by annemarie40

annemarie40 Posted 29 Nov 2011 , 4:12am
post #1 of 18

I make the viva method buttercream and I am having trouble with it cracking, stress lines, in the cake once it is smooth and has set for about 30-40 minutes when I am decorating it.. What should I do? What cause this??? Can anyone please help??? icon_cry.gif

17 replies
icer101 Posted 29 Nov 2011 , 4:33am
post #2 of 18

Hi, Please post the recipe that you are using. When i make american b/c. it is the wilton one with the butter , shortening, i use whipping cream, etc. It never cracks. Yours could be too thick. Some say to add a touch of vinegar. I have been decorating 17 yrs, I have never added vinegar to my buttercream . Be sure, your cake is on a sturdy cake board. i usually tape 3-4 together(especiall for the 9x13 , 11x15, 12x18. I tape 2-3 together for 8x4, 10x4 , etc. hth

grandmomof1 Posted 29 Nov 2011 , 4:50am
post #3 of 18

Buttercream will crack every time if there is movement in the cake. If you are using cardboard for your board you may not be using enough cardboard to support the cake.

annemarie40 Posted 29 Nov 2011 , 5:21am
post #4 of 18

I use the cake central viva method buttercream..

1 1/2 cup crisco
1 stick butter
2 lbs p. sugar
flavorings
water

It could be the cake board, but this happens even when I don't move the cake at all.. just simple decorating is causing cracking. I did use heavy cream the other day and noticed less cracking in it. Maybe that is what I should use instead of water.

annemarie40 Posted 29 Nov 2011 , 5:24am
post #5 of 18

One more thing, where should I get cake boards? I buy them at walmart.. Is there a place to get them cheaper?

poohsmomma Posted 29 Nov 2011 , 3:06pm
post #6 of 18

Try using foam core instead of cardboard. It's stronger and won't bend under the weight of the cake causing cracks.

JanH Posted 29 Nov 2011 , 3:26pm
post #7 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by annemarie40

I make the viva method buttercream and I am having trouble with it cracking, stress lines, in the cake once it is smooth and has set for about 30-40 minutes when I am decorating it.. What should I do? What cause this??? Can anyone please help??? icon_cry.gif




Are you waiting 30-40 minutes for the icing to set up before smoothing?

If so, the b/c has completely set up and you're cracking it. B/c should only be slightly crusted when trying to use the Viva or Melvira method....

Viva Method:

http://cakecentral.com/articles/71/how-to-create-faux-fondant-the-paper-smoothing-towel-method-viva

Melvira Method:

http://cakecentral.com/articles/126/quick-easy-smooth-icing-using-a-roller-melvira-method

HTH

TinkerCakes Posted 29 Nov 2011 , 3:30pm
post #8 of 18

I've made 2 cakes in the last month using indydebis BC. The first one had TERRIBLE cracks so when I made the 2nd I added a little more crisco then it called for and had no cracking. I used the same foam core board under each one. I'm not sure if that helps you any... but that's my story! icon_smile.gif

annemarie40 Posted 30 Nov 2011 , 5:59am
post #9 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by JanH

Quote:
Originally Posted by annemarie40

I make the viva method buttercream and I am having trouble with it cracking, stress lines, in the cake once it is smooth and has set for about 30-40 minutes when I am decorating it.. What should I do? What cause this??? Can anyone please help??? icon_cry.gif



Are you waiting 30-40 minutes for the icing to set up before smoothing?

If so, the b/c has completely set up and you're cracking it. B/c should only be slightly crusted when trying to use the Viva or Melvira method....

Viva Method:

http://cakecentral.com/articles/71/how-to-create-faux-fondant-the-paper-smoothing-towel-method-viva

Melvira Method:

http://cakecentral.com/articles/126/quick-easy-smooth-icing-using-a-roller-melvira-method

HTH








No, I am not waiting that long to smooth. I am saying it takes me that long to smooth then decorate it and once I am done, it will start cracking. I don't pick them up and cause the cracks. they can just sit there and have a "cracked" look. I hope someone can understand me.

JanH Posted 30 Nov 2011 , 9:27am
post #10 of 18

If you need more time to smooth, so that the icing doesn't set up while you're still in the smoothing process.... You can add a bit more fat to your icing recipe so that it takes longer to set up.

I use CakemanOH's brite white frosting recipe which includes several drops of (white) vinegar (to prevent the frosting from cracking):

http://cakecentral.com/recipes/brite-white-buttercream-icing/

HTH

knlcox Posted 30 Nov 2011 , 11:40am
post #11 of 18

I had this issue before I started using SugarShack's method of smoothing. I now use a pot of simmering water and dip my spatulas in so they could be warm. Then I smooth the buttercream! It seems to seal the b/c on the cake. I'm not really sure if that's what it's doing but I've not had a single cracked b/c cake in a long time.

inspiredbymom Posted 30 Nov 2011 , 4:08pm
post #12 of 18

I have been told that it is the water. The more water, the more cracking. It also changes with the fat/sugar ratio. I use SugarShacks recipe and love it. I have the best results from her recipe! (Thanks Sharon!)

TinkerCakes Posted 30 Nov 2011 , 5:34pm
post #13 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by annemarie40

Quote:
Originally Posted by JanH

Quote:
Originally Posted by annemarie40

I make the viva method buttercream and I am having trouble with it cracking, stress lines, in the cake once it is smooth and has set for about 30-40 minutes when I am decorating it.. What should I do? What cause this??? Can anyone please help??? icon_cry.gif



Are you waiting 30-40 minutes for the icing to set up before smoothing?

If so, the b/c has completely set up and you're cracking it. B/c should only be slightly crusted when trying to use the Viva or Melvira method....

Viva Method:

http://cakecentral.com/articles/71/how-to-create-faux-fondant-the-paper-smoothing-towel-method-viva

Melvira Method:

http://cakecentral.com/articles/126/quick-easy-smooth-icing-using-a-roller-melvira-method

HTH







No, I am not waiting that long to smooth. I am saying it takes me that long to smooth then decorate it and once I am done, it will start cracking. I don't pick them up and cause the cracks. they can just sit there and have a "cracked" look. I hope someone can understand me.




I completely understand.....it seemed everytime I looked at mine there were more cracks. Like I said in my other comment, I used more crisco in my 2nd cake and it didn't seem to crack, I don't know if I just got lucky or what. I do know the cracks were not from the board, moving it and I didn't use water so that can't be it either.

annemarie40 Posted 30 Nov 2011 , 5:42pm
post #14 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by knlcox

I had this issue before I started using SugarShack's method of smoothing. I now use a pot of simmering water and dip my spatulas in so they could be warm. Then I smooth the buttercream! It seems to seal the b/c on the cake. I'm not really sure if that's what it's doing but I've not had a single cracked b/c cake in a long time.




Where do I find this method? Do you have link for it?

I thank everyone for all the help. I am going to go through each one and try them. I want to do the best I can and if I have try everything to get it right I will. Thanks so very much!!!!

Jimbos76 Posted 30 Nov 2011 , 7:28pm
post #15 of 18

Funny, I use the same recipe and the same thing happens to me! I was wondering what was going on as well. I've tried so many different recipes that I really just want to find one that works for me and be done with it.

annemarie40 Posted 5 Dec 2011 , 4:15am
post #16 of 18

Just found this out.. Crisco doesn't work for icing because it has 0 trans fat. So use vegetable shortening that doesn't say that if you don't want dry crusty icing. I am trying this out this week!!!

inspiredbymom Posted 5 Dec 2011 , 1:55pm
post #17 of 18

This thread jinxed me! I have not had too much trouble with cracking icing since I started using cake drums and sugar shack's icing. However, I did a cake Friday (double layer 12x1icon_cool.gif and put in on a rect. cake "drum" (first time using) and it flexed in the middle when we moved it. ((((((((horrified!!!)))))))) Viva to the rescue! Put a plywood board underneath to transport....all is well. (hopefully)

annemarie40 Posted 7 Dec 2011 , 3:30pm
post #18 of 18

I hope your cake made it safe and sound...

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