I am in search of a new buttercream recipe for cakes... I have been using the Wilton recipe for a long time but I honestly don't care for the flavor. I have tried different shortenings and powdered sugars. I figure that if I don't like the frosting why would I give someone else a cake with it on it...
So is anyone willing to share their buttercream recipes with me?? I am looking for something that stays firm, crusts well and is great for decorating cakes...
I'm a new convert to Sharon Zambito's (Sugar Shack's) recipe, which is in the recipe section here. I can't get hi ratio shortening where I live, but even so, it's great. I thought the powdered coffee creamer in the recipe was just for flavor (and, indeed, it tastes really good), but it makes for a smoother, creamier icing with almost no air bubbles. For better results, beat the doowadiddy out of the shortening at the beginning (I let it run for about 10-15 minutes before going on to the next step). And, as she says, make enough so that the icing covers your beater totally. Right offhand, I can't remember whether I make a double recipe or whether the recipe itself is very large, but I generally make it my KA 5 quart with 4 pounds of powdered sugar. It freezes, so there's no problem with leftovers.
I've always just used the one that's been on the back of the C&H powdered sugar box since before I was born. Along with strawberry (using a combination of jam, extract, and red food coloring) and maple (using real syrup; Vermont Grade B is probably best because of its more robust flavor) variations of my own design.
It's simple, it can be mixed by hand (even though the box currently specifies an electric mixer, I've never even SEEN anybody use one), and it tastes good.
I also use Sharon's butter cream, but for covering the cake. For a filling, I love Edna's butter cream, www.designmeacake.com. She is here on cc. All of her recipes are fantastic!! HTH
I use Swiss Meringue Buttercream and don't like anything else now!!
Here is a link to FromScratchSF's blog, she has a great in-depth description of how to make it: http://fromscratchsf.wordpress.com/2011/03/08/tutorial-swiss-meringue-buttercream/
I think a lot of the flavor has to do with what extracts you add to it. I use 2 tsp of clear vanilla, 1 tsp clear butter, and 1/4 tsp imitation almond extract per 4 lbs of powdered sugar. I use Sharon Zambito's buttercream recipe but I also use 1 stick of salted and 1 stick of unsalted butter in place of some of the hi ratio shortening.
I recently had a wedding cake consult and the mother of the bride told me that my buttercream had just the right amount of everything in it. I thought that was one of the nicest compliments I've ever received because I've spent so much time trying different recipes and perfecting this buttercream flavor to suit my tastebuds. She also went on to say that she makes her own icing at home and that she wasn't a diabetic for nothing! She said she really knows her buttercreams!
Meringue buttercreams do not crust. I have tried them all and I too prefer a crusting buttercream for decorating.