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Italian Merignue Buttercream

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

So, I made the IMBC tonight for the first time. Watched a video and followed the instructions very carefully. The texture is silky and shiny but it tastes like butter to me! What did I do wrong? I let the sugar water get to a temp of 245 and started pouring into the egg white mixture but I noticed that some of the sugar water hardened on the side of the pot that I was pouring from. Did I cook the sugar water too long and therefore didn't get enough flavor added to the egg whites? Did I pour it into the bowl to slow? I feel like I don't taste enough of the "sweet" flavor. I even added vanilla but it still tastes like butter to me. I'd really like to perfect it on the next go round so I don't waste all of this butter! Please help me if you can. Thank You!!

post #2 of 12

I wouldn't consider myself an expert on this subject, but I do make IMBC quite often.  I cook my sugar to 240, and pour it into the mixer in a steady stream between the side of the bowl and the whip.  If your sugar hits your whip attachment while its whipping, all the sugar will get flung out to the sides of your bowl, and you will lose some "sweetness" there.  It could also be your recipe.  Hope this helps!

post #3 of 12

To start it is not supposed to be a very sweet buttercream like the american so many are used to. You also want to make sure you don't eat it when it is cold or yes it will taste like butter. I do find that you need to add some sort of flavor to it as well. 

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post #4 of 12

Compared to standard American buttercream it will taste nowhere near as sweet, and more buttery.  It sounds to me like you got it right.

 

The idea when pouring the sugar is to have the mixer running pretty fast and pour in a thin stream between the edge of the bowl and the whip.  You don't want it to hit the whip because it will splatter the sugar onto the edge of the bowl where it will harden almost immediately.  Depending on your mixer this can be rather tricky.  Larger mixers are easier since they have a bigger gap between the whip and the bowl. 

 

Then let it cool to below 90 before putting the butter in.  If it hardens up to butter like consistency after sitting, or being refrigerated, you have to re-whip it. 
 

post #5 of 12

Italian Meringue Buttercream is not overly sweet, it's a rich yet light cream with a hint of butter.  What quantities of egg white, sugar and butter did you use?  The first time I made it I found it too greasy and buttery so I reduced the amount of butter, which works perfectly for me and in my opinion gives a better buttercream.

 

If you let me know the quantities of everything you used I can advise how much butter I would use.

post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
Suzanne,
The recipe I followed was 5 egg whites with 1/4 cup sugar and for the sugar water 1 cup sugar with 1/4 cup water. I added 1 pound of butter. I was also reading where salted butter increases the buttery taste and this is what I used so I'm wondering if that had an impact on the flavor. I can handle a buttery flavor and I wasn't expecting an overly sweet icing but this taste was very buttery and almost greasy tasting. I felt like I was eating a stick of butter. If you are able to tell me the amount of butter to use that would be great!
Thank You
post #7 of 12

I'm not good with volume measures - I weigh everything but, according to good old Google you are using roughly the same amounts of everything as I do except the butter.  Having tried with 1 lb butter and finding it as you have, very greasy and almost as if you were eating pure butter, I now use 12 oz butter (a mixture of 8 oz salted and 4 oz unsalted) to a 5 egg mix.  Much better, in my opinion.

 

Hope this helps:)

post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by ashleyj View Post

So, I made the IMBC tonight for the first time. Watched a video and followed the instructions very carefully. The texture is silky and shiny but it tastes like butter to me! What did I do wrong? I let the sugar water get to a temp of 245 and started pouring into the egg white mixture but I noticed that some of the sugar water hardened on the side of the pot that I was pouring from. Did I cook the sugar water too long and therefore didn't get enough flavor added to the egg whites? Did I pour it into the bowl to slow? I feel like I don't taste enough of the "sweet" flavor. I even added vanilla but it still tastes like butter to me. I'd really like to perfect it on the next go round so I don't waste all of this butter! Please help me if you can. Thank You!!

Meaning you added the vanilla as an after-thought? How much vanilla did you add? For a single batch of meringue buttercream I use up to 2 TABLE SPOONS of excellent quality real vanilla extract. Makes a huge difference.

 

The quality of your butter also makes a difference. I use unsalted butter (Plugra), add a pinch of salt. 

 

Finally meringue buttercreams are nowhere as sweet as the standard American buttercream. 


Edited by vgcea - 3/4/13 at 10:37am
post #9 of 12

I use SMBC whic is close to IMBC, I dont follow the amount of the flavour in the recipe , I keep adding the flavour until the SMBC has the tasty flavour I want, otherwise its all butter taste

post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 
Ok, w/your measurements then I'd be decreasing the butter amount by 1 stick which is a lot. So, I am anxious to try this and hopefully it will do the trick.
Thank You!!
post #11 of 12

I assume a stick is 4 oz?  That would be right.  I add a little vanilla, probably less than a teaspoon, just until it tastes right.

 

Hope you like this version better, it's the only way I make it now.
 

post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 
Me too! If I'm decreasing the butter by that much then it has to be better! I'm so anxious to try it and I will def let you know how it turns out.
Thank You
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