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Buttercream: Why can't you stay smooth looking on the cake?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I have been really trying hard to master the buttercream technique and it has been a failure so far.  The best part, I get to practice some more and enjoy every bit of the failure...Yummy!

 

Here is my recipe for vanilla buttercream:

 

- 3 sticks of unsalted butter

- 2 tspn. Vanilla extract

- 1/4 milk

- a pinch of salt

- 1 LB & 1/2 of Powder Sugar

- 2 TBLSPN. Meringue Powder

 

Cream it all and I have my frosting.

 

I seen other receipes and it requires less than what I've done above but it doesn't create enough to cover a 2 layer 9x2 round cake.  Even this isn't enough and I wind up making more. 

 

Another issues I have with this is, It's get too soft and it isn't that I blend it long, 1-2 min tops. 

 

Finally, How can I frost a smooth looking cake.  Man, that is hard to master.  I have to say this has been my challenge.  Arghhhh!

 

I love to hear what you have to say. 

 

Thank you.

post #2 of 8

Are you useing a kitchen aid mixer with the paddle attachment ? or a regular hand mixer?

Do you let the butter come to room temp or zap it in the microwave?

What size of off set spatula do you use?

post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 

I use the basic hand held mixer type and  the stationed one which is similar (oval with 4 bars).  When it comes to the butter, it is mostly room temperture and if I'm pressed for time I zap it 8 seconds to soften to room temp consistency, not runny.  The spatula is the Angled Spatula Smooth the cake.  It comes small and large by wilton.  I use mostly the small since my cake aren't over 12 inches. 

post #4 of 8

Azu,

 

There are a few issues to address but I wanted to discuss the smooth finish with you.

 

Aways do a crumb coat.  :

 

 

TIP : For the middle : Once you place your cake down and are ready to put buttercream, make sure that you pipe the outside rim of your cake first, then apply the buttercream to the interior of that rim and spread , no more than 1/4 thick

 

 TIP ; When applying your buttercream on the top, spread the buttercream all over but take your scraper and work the buttercream to the center of the cake, turning as you go so that you will have an even amount of buttercream dispersed.

 

 TIP : For the sides of your cake : Apply the buttercream , then take a 6' wide or 10' wide scraper and lightly smooth out the sides while turning the cake. Keep doing this until the buttercream is evenly distributed. You are guaranteed to use less buttercream than you originally thought. Your sides will be very even with the top.

 

When I make my cakes , I do as much as I can to smooth it out, for sure there will be marks and small dents, that ok.

Once I have done my best, I take my cake and put it in the freezer for 15 minutes to allow the frosting to get hard.

 

Prepare a hot glass of water and have a spatula ready . When you dip the spatula in heated water , the goal is to get the metal part very hot , once that is done, wipe it with a clean cloth and proceed to smooth out your cake. Continue process till cake is smooth.

 

 If you see the frosting is starting to get soft (maybe because it is a big cake), no problem, put it back in the freezer. Repeat.

You will soon see a cake that is extremely smooth with no marks.

 

Your finish should look something like this picture

: Smooth.png

 

 

 

 

 

 

Petals
Réalisé avec un soupçon d'amour.

Served Up
(168 photos)
Wine and Cheese
(62 photos)
 
Reply

Petals
Réalisé avec un soupçon d'amour.

Served Up
(168 photos)
Wine and Cheese
(62 photos)
 
Reply
post #5 of 8

Well described Petals......thanks

post #6 of 8

Cheers Chefross,

 

I am very fond of decorating.....I know you have alot of experience in baking, its nice to share.

 

Petals.

 

 

Petals
Réalisé avec un soupçon d'amour.

Served Up
(168 photos)
Wine and Cheese
(62 photos)
 
Reply

Petals
Réalisé avec un soupçon d'amour.

Served Up
(168 photos)
Wine and Cheese
(62 photos)
 
Reply
post #7 of 8

As for me,  once my Buttercream has crusted on the outside,  I use a paint roller sponge ( brand new never used)...  It works like a charm..

 

This cake I used the sponge paint roller...

 

chocolatescroll.jpg

post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Wow this looks fabulous! I'll try again.
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