I use 2lbs of ps, 1 cup of Crisco, and 1/2 cup of water or milk ( I tried both) and flavoring. It crusts quickly and is very easy to smooth with a paper towel. Unfortunatly, if I decorate the cake a day before, the colored icing no longer looks uniform in color. It's like the shortening is seperating out and leaving white streaks. I've tried beating the shortening and liquid for a long time ( 5-7 minutes), then adding the sugar and more liquid if needed. Has anyone had this problem? Thanks for the help!
it could be the brand of coloring you're using. thee have been a few threads discussing the different brands that work and those that give problems. what brand?
What kind of coloring did you use? Did you use a gel or paste coloring? Sounds like what happens when you use "regular" food coloring in the liquid drop bottles.
I've always used Wilton's gel color. Should I cut back on the liquid and use corn syrup to thin?
Did you make dark colors? What colors did you use?
Christina...that is the same exact recipe I use for my BC and I've never had separation. I'm voting for the coloring. I only use Americolor.
Yes, I was making a dark red with Wilton's no taste red and a bit of black. Seems like the other times it has happened, was with darker colors. Where is a good place to get Americolor? Wilton's are the only products around here.
Do you have any bakers supply stores, or cake shops in your area? The ones in my area will sell to you even if you are a hobby baker. They should have Americolor. Also, do you have a Williams Sonoma close? They sell a 5 pack of gel colors. They look just like the Americolor bottles. I haven't used them yet, but they might be an alternative for you if you can't track down another vendor.
Thanks so much to everyone's comments! I've learned a lot from CC and I really enjoy how so many people jump in to help. Thanks!
I have the seperating issue when I make the dark colors that take more color to make. And I have used both Americolor as well as Wilton, and still have problems.
My thoughts on it is that adding that much color gel thins the icing down and causes it to seperate. It only happens once I get it in the bag and start using it. I think heat from hands may add to it.
My fix, I add cornstarch to the icing now when I am coloring it. The cornstratch absorbs the excess liquid, keeps the consistancy, and I don't have the seperating issue.
TexasSugar, does the cornstarch effect the taste or anything? How much would you add to my posted recipe if you had to use a whole bottle of Wilton red? Thanks!!!!
Powder sugar has cornstarch in it, so it is already present. But no I have never tasted the corn starch in the icing. I don't measure when I do it, I just dump a little maybe a teaspoon or tablespoon in depending on how much I am coloring.
I really avoid making large batches of those dark colors. Mostly for the fact that I don't want to walk around with a colored tongue/mouth/lips. I had a student that told me when she made a big batch of red icing she actually used the liquid red food coloring in place of all the water in the recipe. It came out a pretty red and was the consistancy she started with.
I use regular butter when making my buttercream and I use the powdered colors. I never have separation in colors.
I had the same problem this past weekend. I made a cars character cake and separation happened with the red color. I use Wilton's gel and could not get a deep red, it looked pink, so I kept adding color and noticed the BC/color was not mixing. When I piped, the icing was streaking red and white.
Been trying to figure out why that happened. It was my first decorated cake so I don't really have experience, so if anyone can help me on how to achieve correct colors, it is deeply appreciated.
I have had this happen, and then other times it didnt. I dont know what the differnce is. I do 1/2 butter 1/2 crisco.
and I use wilton pastes. they are ALL that is avalible to me with out driving over an hour one way
Sometimes if I know I am going to use an entire batch of a color, I will just toss the paste color in the mixer as it mixes. other times I beat it in there by hand.. I wonder if that makes a differnce?? Honestly I dont know which ones seperate and which dont. LOL
My experience is it is usually dark colors and I have used both Wilton and Americolor and still have it happen, so I don't think it is a brand thing. I just really think that since the darker colors take more color it affects the liquid ratio in the icing. If you add too much water to your buttercream I feel it would do the same.
For a red red icing, I haven't tried this myself, but I had a student that replaced the water in the buttercream recipe with liquid red coloring and the color of red came out very nice.
As I said before I just use a little bit of cornstarch mixed in when coloring it.