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Tiny black flecks in icing when smoothing buttercream with Viva paper towels?

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 

I always use the Viva paper towel method to smooth my cakes.  It's the best!  BUT... the last couple of cakes I have smoothed ended up with these quite a few tiny black flecks (fibers?) on the icing.  Has anyone else had this trouble?  What is happening?

post #2 of 27

what kinda buttercream?

 

is it a cooked meringue?

 

cooked in a teflon pan that's flaking?

 

didja grab the pepper instead of salt?

 

we'd get 'pepper' in the ice at work from mold specks flaking off in the ice machine

 

(i gotta million horror stories i will refrain from sharing ;)

if an inmate is walking down the stairs is that condescending
 
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if an inmate is walking down the stairs is that condescending
 
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post #3 of 27

I used Viva a few nights ago and I didn't have that issue. It might be a good idea to either look at your frosting, and look at the rest of the paper towel roll. Or just buy a new one to see if the issue keeps happening.

post #4 of 27
Thread Starter 

K8memphis... This is a crusting BC that is mixed with my Kitchen Aid mixer.  No teflon involved at all.  The specks seem to appear after 2nd or 3rd pass when smoothing with Viva paper towel.  I can't figure it out!  Anyone else had this problem?
 

post #5 of 27

2nd or 3rd pass--hmmm

 

they're not cake crumbs?

 

nothing flaking off the counter top or table top?

 

ok one more--nothing flaking off from under the top of the ka??

 

you got kids punking you???

 

????

 

oh--are the towels white

 

is it the print off the towels???

if an inmate is walking down the stairs is that condescending
 
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if an inmate is walking down the stairs is that condescending
 
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post #6 of 27

Are you using the all white viva ( no Print)? And you might want to check your mixer and maksure it's not coming from it.

post #7 of 27

I have noticed that the inside of the paper towel used to be the smooth part, and now it is the outside, so I have to take of the first few sheets and use them for clean-up, rather than cake smoothing, since it gets all linty and the lint then passes onto the cake. 

Beginners, be sure to parrot advice and get your post count up as fast as you can. After all, it's not what you know, it's what people THINK you know.
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Beginners, be sure to parrot advice and get your post count up as fast as you can. After all, it's not what you know, it's what people THINK you know.
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post #8 of 27
Thread Starter 

These are all plain white Viva paper towels.  Nothing flaking off of countertops or table.  If it was from my mixer, wouldn't those flecks show up before I do a 2nd or 3rd pass of smoothing around the cake?  They don't show up until the very end of smoothing, but I will look at the mixer to make sure.  I'm using a fondant smoother tool with the paper towel.  I've done this method for 3 years or so.  I'm baffled!
 

post #9 of 27
Thread Starter 

I think your idea of the flecks being from the mixer might be right!!  I just took a damp paper towel and wiped off the metal piece that the blade hooks onto and I had some black on the paper towel.  Not a lot, but enough to possibly be the culprit.  I'm better it was from black icing color.  I still don't know why it takes so many passes of smoothing for it to show, but you guys are awesome!!!  Several heads together are better than one.  Lol!  Thanks so much : )

post #10 of 27

My Kitchenaid has been dropping metal shavings into my bowl, I had to stop using it until I can get it fixed. Run it on high with a paper towel in the bowl to catch whatever it is that is dropping out to inspect further. 

elsewhere.
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elsewhere.
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post #11 of 27
Thread Starter 

kikiandkyle... that's a great idea on how to check it.  That's scary... metal shavings!!!  I'm sending 3 cakes out the door tomorrow.  Sure hope not, but I'll check it out.  Thanks so much ♥

post #12 of 27

The metal piece where the beater blade goes collects a lot of cake batter and whatever else you mix.  I've started using a tooth brush (new) to get all the nooks a toothpick may not get.

post #13 of 27
Thread Starter 

pummy, yes... I just usually wipe it down good, but I am definitely going to use a toothbrush from now on.  Thanks for the great idea for me icon_smile.gif

post #14 of 27

Yeah I had to toss a double batch of cream cheese frosting, I was not happy! 

elsewhere.
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elsewhere.
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post #15 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by kikiandkyle View Post

My Kitchenaid has been dropping metal shavings into my bowl, I had to stop using it until I can get it fixed. Run it on high with a paper towel in the bowl to catch whatever it is that is dropping out to inspect further. 

Is this something peculiar to the KA brand or is it just one particular mixer in the KA mixer line? I've read of the beater also shedding.

 

 I've been hemming and hawing over getting a KA, and I'd hate to invest in something that would mess up my product.

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