Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Cupcakes + Bitchin Icing

I made chocolate cupcakes the other day:

This is the recipe, but I didn't make this icing

This recipe has never failed me. It has directions for making different sized cakes and also cupcakes. I like making the bundt pan one because it's just one pan and looks nice, too. I never really made icing before but I bought a few new tips at bulk-barn the other day and no way was I going to BUY icing. So... get ready.... this is the icing that I made. Adapted from 'Martha Stewart's Cupcakes' cookbook. I couldn't find the recipe online so I'm typing it out... because I love y'all.

Swiss Meringue Buttercream Icing... CHOCOLATE stylez

Not as sweet as standard icing, very buttery and smooth. It's easy to adjust the flavour, instead of chocolate you can add lemon zest or coconut extract.

5 large egg whites
1 cup + 2 tbsp white sugar
Pinch of salt
1 lb butter, at room temperature
1.5 tsp vanilla
4.5 oz semisweet chocolate OR 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips (same thing... I use Bernard Callebaut chocolate chips from Bulk Barn because they are to-die-for... buy them once and you will never go back... so don't buy them because they are $$, ignore everything in these parentheses)

Makes about 5 cups

1. In a double boiler on medium heat, melt chocolate. Allow to cool while you move on with the next steps.

2. If you have a kitchenaid mixer... create a double boiler using a small pot of about 1.5" water and the metal mixer bowl. A small pot is required because you don't want the water in the pot to touch the bottom of the mixing bowl... I tried this today and it worked awesome. If you don't have a KA mixer... you can use a standard double boiler, the KA mixer bowl just means less dishes... moving on. Into the bowl, combine sugar, egg whites and salt. Whisk constantly as the ingredients heat up and the sugar dissolves. You will know when the sugar is dissolved by rubbing a bit of the mix between your fingers. You shouldn't feel any crystals. It doesn't take too long and you don't need much heat. Medium-low works well. Mixture will remain gooey but sugar will dissolve despite the appearance.

3. Take the mixer bowl off of the double boiler and put in onto the mixer with the whisk attachment. Start on low and gradually bring the speed up to medium high. Once you get stiff, glossy peaks (not dry), bring mixer down to medium and let 'er go for another 8-ish minutes. Should look glossy and fluffy. Bowl should also be cooled down (touch the base - should no longer be hot).

4. Bring the mixer down to medium-low. Un-wrap your block of butter and with a knife, gradually add the butter by the tablespoon. I wasn't too picky here - the mixer is going fast enough and the butter is soft enough that it only takes a few spins to incorporate the butter so don't get fussy. My butter was VERY soft, that probably helped. NOTE: THE MIXTURE WILL LOOK CURDLED TOWARDS THE END OF THE ADDITIONS, JUST KEEP WHIPPING AND IT WILL SMOOTH OUT.

5. Turn mixer to low and add vanilla and cooled chocolate. Keep mixer on until bubbles are gone and everything is smooth. You can pipe/spread it immediately or store it as below.

NOW... the best part... this bitch can go in the FREEZER! Haha, use what you need (which will not be the whole recipe) and then freeze the rest for up to a month. You can store it in the fridge for up to 3 days, bring it to room temperature and give it a good whip with a spoon before you try to spread it. This icing is very tasty, not too sweet and very silky smooth.

It should look like this at the end:

This looks like A LOT of work for icing. It is a bit more than your standard sugar+butter+milk type recipe but it's so good and fluffy and very worth it. I put very detailed instructions just in case... I always like a little encouragement in a recipe :)

On a side note... I've really been loving blogging lately but I've noticed that my blog has been largely personal life and cooking. I'm considering starting a unique cooking blog to store all my recipes and write them out according to how I make them. I will keep y'all posted!

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