Neoclassic Buttercream Frosting

The cupcakes were for a bridal shower at work (the groom is my coworker). I used a white cake mix for the cupcakes (because that's what the groom likes), but I went totally purist on the frosting. To be more precise, I went neoclassic. The frosting was pink because that's what the bride likes. I made buttercream frosting from scratch because that's what we all love!

The Neoclassic Buttercream recipe is from The Cake Bible by Rose Levey Beranbaum. I highly recommend this cookbook. It also has a recipe for Classic Buttercream, but when I read "This is an easier technique than that for Classic Buttercream and yields identical results" I was sold. Instead of sugar and water, the recipe uses corn syrup and sugar. "When brought to a full boil, the temperature of the syrup is exactly 238°F." The advantages are:
  • Shorter cooking time.
  • No thermometer is needed.
  • The corn syrup prevents crystals from forming.
Please note:
  • Makes 4 cups (enough to fill and frost two 9” x 1½” layers).
  • All ingredients must be at room temperature.
  • A hand-held beater is easier than a stand mixer.
  • Vanilla was added to the original recipe.
  • I posted 3 links at the end to videos with cupcake frosting techniques.

6 large egg yolks (3.5 fluid ounces)
¼ cup sugar
½ liquid cup corn syrup
2 cups unsalted butter
1 to 2 capfuls of vanilla extract
pink icing color

  • Have a greased 1-cup heatproof glass measure near the range. [I missed this step; that might explain why the frosting was right on the edge of being too soft.]
  • In a bowl, beat the yolks with an electric mixer until light in color.
  • At the same time, combine the sugar and syrup in a small saucepan. A nonstick pan is recommended, but I do not have one.]  Heat, stirring constantly until the sugar dissolves and mixture comes to a rolling boil. The entire surface should be covered with large bubbles.
  • Immediately transfer the syrup to the glass measure to stop the cooking.
  • Mix in the syrup.
    • If using an electric hand-held mixer, beat the syrup into the yolks in a steady stream. Don’t allow syrup to fall onto the beaters or it will spin onto the bowl. I’m guessing that means it will immediately solidify onto the walls of the bowl.  
    • If using a stand mixer, turn off the mixer and pour in a small amount of the syrup over the yolks. Immediately beat at high speed for 5 seconds. Stop the mixer and add a larger amount of syrup. Beat at high speed for 5 seconds. Continue with the remaining syrup.
    • For the last addition, use a rubber scraper to remove the syrup clinging to the glass measure.
  • Continue beating until completely cool.
  • Gradually beat in the butter.
  • Add 1 to 2 capfuls of vanilla extract. You’ll have to read the book for other flavoring variations – they go on for several pages. I saw nothing about vanilla flavoring in the book. The honey recipe sounds really wonderful!
  • Using a toothpick, add a small amount of coloring. Professional colorings are very potent so that strong color does not dilute the frosting. If the toothpick touches the frosting, it should not be dipped back into the coloring. If you need more color, you need to use a second toothpick.
  • Place in an airtight bowl.
  • You can store the frosting for 6 hours at room temperature, 1 week refrigerated, or 8 months frozen. Be sure to bring to room temperature before using. Rebeat to restore texture. Do not rebeat chilled buttercream until it has reached room temperature or it may curdle.
  • I applied the frosting with wild abandon -- using a pastry tube. Short on the technique, big on the fun! The next night, I discovered a ton of YouTube videos on how to frost a cupcake. Mind you, no one was complaining about the appearance of the cupcakes but still, it would have been fun to experiment.Here are three of the videos:

1 comment:

Lisa said...

What lovely looking frosting. I have a sweet treat linky party going on at my blog till Monday and I'd love it if you'd come by and link your frosting up. http://sweet-as-sugar-cookies.blogspot.com/2011/07/sweets-for-saturday-25.html

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