To all the experienced bakers out there, I would like to know if there is some sort of "secret ingredient" bakeries use in their frosting? I am unable to make frosting that stay stif and i have noticed that the frosting on cupcakes from bakeries, tends to be crystalised on the outside. What to they use to achieve thist? Please enlighten. Mary
I'm not sure there's any secret ingredient? It depends on what kind of frosting you're looking to make... cream cheese? Buttercream? How much confectioners sugar you use in ratio to milk (or cream) for the stiff consistency, etc.
The bakeries use what is called "crusting" buttercream on the recipes here on cake central. It is made with shortening not butter, as well as a high proportion of sugar to fat.
All properly made buttercream will pipe well and hold its shape. Some types will not crust. I have used most of the recipes from www.wilton.com with success. DO NOT substitute until you have good experience with making the type of buttercream that you would like to sell.
If you are making a cooked sugar meringue, check your thermometer calibration.
I have used Wilton's white buttercream recipe for years. Probably available on their website. Everyone loves it and it is crusting. Seals over on the outside and stays creamy underneath.
My kids do not like Homemade tasting frosting (wilton buttercreams, etc.). The commercial buttercreams such as Lucks do have a different taste. Any suggestions on a frosting you can make at home that will taste like the commercial ones (and also hold shape for decors such as roses/piping)? Thanks.
The bakeries probably use white (artificial) vanilla. If you are using real vanilla extract at home, that is the difference in taste that your kids notice.
One of my brothers asked me to bake chocolate chip cookies "like those in the package". I used shortening in place of margarine, and artificial vanilla, and he pronounced them a success.
Well they can be little barbarians even though they develop better taste as they become adults...
Welcome to the forum, MaryAnn and Teddy A!
The reason it is difficult (if not impossible) to re-create grocery store frosting at home is because the frosting in the grocery stores (Publix, WalMart, Albertsons, Safeway, etc.) is made in very large batches (buckets) from commercial ingredients. The frosting has a LOT of extra ingredients to make it smooth, shelf-stable, and perform as needed when a decorator must decorate a new cake every 5-10 minutes.
These commercially prepared, bulk frostings utilize ingredients that CANNOT be made at home. Here is an example of 35-40 pound buckets of bases used in commercial buttercreams available from a commercial supplier:
American consumers have grown up with "grocery store frosting". We like it. We like the cakes. Most don't give a hoot that they are made in batches of 1000 and frozen and shipped to the grocery stores and high-turnover bakeries. Personally, I don't see a thing wrong with it. (Scratch bakers, please don't beat me up....lol.)
Sure, there are a ton of ingredients with long names that you can't pronounce, but that is common in many items we purchase at the grocery store.
Homemade cake and homemade frosting DO taste different. There will always be some people (kids and adults) who want the "kind from the grocery store". There will also be a fair number that like the homemade version better.
Personally, I use 2 sticks of butter (1 C), & 1 2lb bag of powdered sugar, and heavy cream added till I reach the consistency I want. Flavoring of choice.
It does crust, and if I use less cream, then I will have a stiffer buttercream. The more cream I add, the softer, creamier buttercream I will have.
Whenever I make my frosting if its not to thick enough I just add more powered sugar and I also let it sit in the fridge for about 20 minutes before I use it too. Works every time for me.