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Old 04-27-2006, 12:07 PM   #1
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 69
My Buttercream frosting broke

Hey All, Long time no post...

Naturally, I saw a recipe for Buttercream frosting on Good Eats the other night, AFTER I made mine & broke it. I got my recipe from Perfect Pastry by Nick Malgieri, I think is the author.
Anyhow, it called for 5 egg whites to be heated till hot in a pot w/ 1 1/2c of sugar. I did this, and then it said to beat it until it increases in volume. Now, being an experienced baker, I'm thinking that it will end up like a meringue volume increase, and that did not happen. It increased, but it became glossy when I finally started adding the 3 sticks of butter to it, and it broke. THEN, when I added the lemon juice, and zest, it just became like a thick, clumpy texture, mmmmmm, sort of like whipped cream cheese, or that kind of boursin cheese in a tub.... I put it in the fridge until it was time to frost the cake, and the outer edges had hardened, but the inside was still spreadable.
now, the frosting tasted good, considering I hate buttercream frosting because of the butter taste. It tasted like lemon frosting, but I could only spread a minute amount on the cake as it was ssssooooo rich. Then, I had to spread a center layer of lemon curd on the top of the cake as well, which took away some of the richness of the frosting.
It was a badass cake, mind you. Double layer of silver white starlite cake, w/ lemon curd in the center and buttercream frosting. It tasted like it came out of a restaurant, I'm tellin ya.
But, my point is, can anyone tell me their experiences or have a solution to the reason my frosting broke??

Thanks guys


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Old 04-27-2006, 12:50 PM   #2
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I have never had buttercream break but I do not often make it. It needs looooong beating and the butter very soft.
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Old 04-27-2006, 02:51 PM   #3
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I never put egg whites in my buttercream as the oil content of the butter will not work with them right.
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Old 04-29-2006, 05:20 AM   #4
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Hmmm, just checked all of my buttercream recipes, and none of 'em have the egg whites heated up with the sugar - ones that have yolks, yes, but not the whites. All my recipes have the whites being beaten separately, while the sugar is cooked to a soft ball stage, then added to the whites and beaten again before adding the butter.

Did you say this was an Alton Brown recipe? I honestly don't know why anyone uses his recipes; there have been more posts here on things of his that just - don't - work!
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Old 05-02-2006, 07:10 AM   #5
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Hi Marmalady,

No, this recipe was from Nick MAlgeiri, Perfect PAstry. I happened to see Alton's show on Buttercream Frosting after making mine.
Insofar as the recipe, it called for 5 eggwhites, heated w/ 1/2? 3/4? cup of sugar until hot and sugar has disolved. Then beat it until it is cool and has increased in volume....
So, what I gather from your post is that buttercream is made from egg yolks, and not whites...hhhmmmm. Well leave it to me to try a new recipe on a special occasion baking spree...

I'll have to look for another recipe I guess. But, let me ask you this, is there a name/recipe for frosting that looks like a cloud, but is not a meringue? It is for frosting cakes, and no, not that shortening frosting from the grocery stores, ick. Is what I'm thinking about Royal Icing??

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