I am working on my time management here and having difficulties lol. I am making 3 cakes for this coming weekend. 1 for Friday and 2 for Saturday.
So from what I've read, you shouldn't glaze your cake until a few hours prior to serving it, but can I make the glaze ahead of time? Or do I need to make it when I'm ready to use it?
I've also been researching different types of buttercream icing (who knew this could be so complicated lol) and I think I want to try making either Italian or Swiss buttercream rather than "American" buttercream. Apparently American buttercream is not considered proper buttercream according to culinary schools (snobs ;P), and is used mostly for novices, and practice. The biggest complaint I have heard about American buttercream is that it is too sweet. The recipes I have used have gotten rave reviews, and the biggest factor was that it wasn't too sweet. I don't use any liquid in my buttercream and add a little salt. I think this takes it from sickeningly sweet, to creamy buttery melt in your mouth heaven. It even impressed my 90 year old grandma-in-law, let me tell you how big my head got after that compliment.
Anyway, is there really a stigma against American buttercream? Are other buttercreams really that much better? I would really like to make the different styles that I have read up on, but that might not work into my time management plan. So, I need advice on whether I should stick with my tried and true recipe for these upcoming cakes, or if I should venture into the unknown for a (hopefully) better result.
My last question is in regards to mixing different mediums. I love the look of the mirror cakes, and on my pond cake that I need for Friday, I was wanting to use a mirror glaze as my water rather than piping gel. I think this would be less flimsy as well, as it drys to a jelly like. consistency, where as piping gel doesn't dry (at least to my knowledge). But I only want half the cake to be a water feature that will cascade down only a portion of the cake. The remaining decoration I want as a buttercream rock garden (or mulch, or grass garden). My hope was to create a dam out of buttercream and chocolate rocks to surround the pond and just add the glaze there, leaving the rest of the cake free to decorate with buttercream. Do you think this will work? Or do you think it will just create a huge mess? I've read that royal icing decorations can melt when placed on buttercream icing. Will glaze have a similar reaction when it comes into contact with the buttercream?
So many questions, so little time...management skills.
Can't help you with the mirror glaze, haven't tried it yet. For the buttercream, if you add 1/2 to 3/4 tsp of lemon extract, it will cut the sweetness and there is no lemon taste. I haven't had a problem with royal icing decorations melting on buttercream...haven't used it much but when I have, they held up fine. Good luck!
I personally think you should stick with the frosting with which you are familiar for your up coming cakes. Try the SMBC and IMBC at your leasure when you are not under pressure. Who cares what the culinary schools think? It is your customers who pay the bills and if they are in love with your American Buttercream, give them what they want! Taste, in food as in art, is subjective, so you will never please everyone.
I have no experience with the glaze, but evidently it holds up well because people are using it over buttercream. As to your dam, to be safe, how about using graham crackers? Good luck!
It definitely depends on taste. You hear so much about adding lemon juice and lemon zest to buttercream, but my family hated it didn't like it much. I did the ISMB on Easter and didn't have any issues with it. From what I read, most people think theyve messed up when they add the butter because it looks like a curdled mess. The trick is to continue beating for like 20-30 more seconds and it's buttercream made to perfection. You could also add some cream cheese to it.
Haven't done the mirror glaze either even though I've watched videos on it. Good luck! Let us know how it turns out.