Originally Posted by FromScratchSF
Linda, just to correct you, San Francisco is a 7x7 mile square that is surrounded on 3 sides by water and is covered in fog about 85% of the year on the bay side of the city, and 95% of the year on the ocean side of the city. If you go to Weather.com right now it shows humidity is 100% with no rain. Living in San Francisco is like living on a completely different continent from the rest of California in terms of weather. I don't know why people don't think of SF as humid, because believe me, it is year round.
I just made a triple batch of my recipe with butter at 73 degrees and it came out perfect in 100% humidity and the thermometer says it's 72 degrees in the kitchen. It's why I was up before the sun to get my stuff done because once everyone starts really cooking the kitchen can get up to at least 90 degrees (because nobody has air conditioning here), which is not only bad for any buttercream made with no shortening, the walk-in is way too small for everyone to sit in to cool off
I am well aware of the geography of SF. I love it there, I have spent time there a lot during different times of the year and dream of the day I can live there, maybe in retirement..... anyway. It still is a different humidity than on the east coast. My DD was just there, came home yesterday. She even said the same thing. Seeing that my DD will trying very had to get a job in one of the great tech companies out there next year, I suspect I'll be visiting there a lot in the future. But in the meantime I invite you to visit anywhere on the east coast in August, our best humid month. You will then see what I mean.
You are surrounded by water, it helps tremoundously!!!! We, unfortunately, are not. And even if we did live on the east coast near the water, it would still be a different humidity. And as a result you will get different results in your baking. Remember, this is science. It is probably akin to having to bake differently at a higher sea level. If baking is different for those at higher sea levels, it only is logical that it could be the same living in different parts of the country.
I remember coming home to visit the east coast after living on the west coast for just 6 months. I felt like nothing like a wet wash cloth the whole time even though the humidity was the same reading. My body had adjusted to the different humiditys. Even though both places had 100% humidity, it was still more oppressive here on the east coast.
It is more than just a humidity level. Like I said being surrounded by water will make the humidity feel and act differently than when you are inland like I am. Being surrounded by water will make the air different also. I used to love to drive home from work and just feel that ocean air take over.
And having tried all sorts of SMBC recipes, including the one you posted, I can personally attest to the experience of how it reacted. I am not a beginner to SMBC, but rather very experienced in trying this recipe every which way I possibly can. I do that on purpose to all my recipes to I can personally see the results and correct it when training my employees.
I am not saying your recipe does not work, nor is your method wrong or failed. I am saying that when it is Summer, and depending where you live, and the temperature in your surrounding are where you make it will all contribute to the results.
I made your recipe more than once. That is why I can safely say that in my experience this is what will work best in warmer weather. The first time it I made it in my area, it was cooler outside as we had a longer than usual Winter. I got perfect results, just like you posted. In fact I used your "all the butter in at once at room temp" method several times. But as soon as the weather here got warmer and more humid, this method failed to work as best as it did when MY weather was colder than yours. And I do get colder weather living in the NE. It was when I switched back to the method I used to use that the SMBC started coming back in a timely manner. Probably when the weather starts getting cooler again, I will switch back to the "all in at once" method. But just like anything else in the science of baking, one has to adjust for the climate in their area.
Anybody here get the recipes from the Moms or Grandmothers who say "add more liquid in rainy weather" or something like that? This is the same thing. When I teach this to my employees I tell them that the process will change once the weather gets cooler. So what I am saying here is actually not a statement saying your recipe does not work. It is a statement saying you will need to adjust it for outside circumstances.
You should not be taking my findings as a way of saying your method does not work. I apologize if you are offended. There is no need to defend your recipe, just keep an open mind that not all of us live in the same conditions you do and will get different results.
I am also going to send you a PM, because I think I need to make sure we are on the same page.