Thursday, April 14, 2011

The Butter cream diaries

When I was young I went to a friends place and she had this "kids cook book". It was legendary! The things we made from that book opened a whole new world to me. This is where I learnt to make Chocolate butter cream. I couldn't believe I hadn't known about this sooner! Suddenly every cake I made had butter cream on it. If I couldn't bake anything, I would put butter cream on bought biscuits. As I got older, butter cream was too easy. Fondant was the new butter cream. But now it is making a refreshing come back to the cake world. It was always there, just maybe not appreciated like it is now. What is also good about butter cream, is the challenge in using different piping skills that once was so incredibly important in patisserie, and yet now you can get away with not being very good at piping at all. Like most things there are always new and better recipes coming about. My favourite to use is the French recipe, creating a Pate' Bomb, whisking 121 deg sugar syrup into eggs, whole or just whites, creating a meringue like mix at which you gradually add your room temp butter creating a beautiful glossy and firm setting butter cream. This recipe is the perfect carrier for more delicate flavours such as violet, rose, olive, and pistachio, without that overbearing sweetness of the powdered sugar, perfect for macarons. Nothing can take us away, as much as we try, from the butter cream we make at home, soft butter, whisked till pale with icing sugar, a little vanilla essence, and if its not playing nicely a little lemon juice or even milk to break it up a little. This classic butter cream used perfectly on home baked cupcakes, and birthday cakes, and in my case whatever cookie I could find in the cupboard that I decided would be better covered in butter cream! 

At the moment I'm loving the access ( when your internet is doing what it's told) to many different tutorials. If you don't know how to do something, chances are there is a tutorial on the net somewhere!

So here is a couple of buttercream techniques I played around with the other day, and the tutorials I found to make them.

My Mini Rose swirl cake

My hydrangea cake, this was so fun to do!

True test of a steady hand


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