So here I am with my next post on how to make a killer mango buttercream frosting, as promised. The heading says it all, and I am not joking or exaggerating a bit. A mango buttercream frosting is all you need this season for your dreams to come true.
Deep and intense flavoured with mango, that golden speckle of sunshine that can cheer you up in a instant, light as feather, smooth and velvety, melt in mouth kinda.
And I can write eloquently on mango buttercream frosting till the eternity but before that lets discuss the key points in making a good buttercream frosting.
What is butter cream frosting – buttercream frosting is the simplest icing you can treat your everyday homebaked goodies. Simple, delicious to the core and ridiculously easy to whip up in few minutes. As the name suggests, it is made with butter or more precisely it involves , creaming the butter with sugar to stiff peaks that can hold its shape or stiff enough to pipe beautiful flowers on your cakes and cupcakes.
Real and good quality butter makes delicious , lip smacking buttercream frosting but they are not created to hold their shapes for long in hot weather. Butter tends to melt away if kept open for long hours, hence many uses shortenings in buttercream frosting, which seriously compromise the taste of the real buttercream frosting, but on the other hand shortening can withstand hot weather to some extent and also will remain stiff for longer time so that you can pipe the flowers at your leisure.
Types of buttercream frosting – basically four types exists –
American buttercream – the easiest one to whip up and you can not go wrong with it. Simply whip up butter, icing sugar, vanilla and little milk in your mixer till stiff peaks are visible. This one produces slightly grainy texture which can be tackled by adding boiling water to powdered sugar to create emulsions and also nailing the perfect fat to sugar ratio. But on the downside, this one is not enough stable to withstand higher temperatures. But definitely the easiest one for your regular cakes and cupcakes. This classic American buttercream is my regular choice for daily baking needs and sometimes instead of milk I have also used small amount of whipping cream, which really gives a smooth satiny texture.
French buttercream – it taste absolutely good with richness of egg yolks whipped together with sugar syrup and butter. On the downside, it melts away very fast even with slight rise in room temperature.
For people like us, who lives in tropical countries like India, a good buttercream frosting that can withstand hot weather is really a necessity than a choice. So we are left with other two types –
Italian meringue buttercream – hot boiling sugar syrup is poured over whipped egg whites and sugar. Process is little complicated and tricky and it is easy to mess up the things, given that egg whites themselves are the trickiest ingredient to handle.
Swiss meringue buttercream – my personal favourite one and the most preferred buttercream frosting choice for bakers all over the world. The light silky texture was simply mind blowing. I had never tasted anything so delicate and delicious before.
The technique to make a Swiss meringue buttercream frosting is slightly different from the rest of its clan of buttercream frosting. It uses “bain marie” method, or in other words it uses water bath technique, where egg whites and sugar are lightly whipped together over a water bath and then whipped in a kitchen mixer until cooled. This process also ensures that egg whites are not used raw, if you are concern about using raw eggs in frosting.
- Egg whites : 3 large eggs (separated)
- Icing sugar : 1 cup
- Butter (see the note): 200 gm
- Mango pulp (thick): ½ cup
- Ice cubes : 2 cups
- Bring a pot of water to boil. Lower the heat and let the water simmer on low heat.
- Clean another bowl with tissue paper very well and add the egg whites in it.
- Please note that a slight trace of egg yolk can ruin your buttercream dream.
- Whip it lightly with a hand whisk and place this bowl over pot of simmering water.
- Keep in mind that the upper vessel should not touch the water.
- Add sugar in batches (divide into 3 or 4 batch), and whisk till sugar is fully dissolved.
- This will take some time around 10 minute. Once the sugar is completely dissolved and not gritty or grainy to touch, you can remove it from the heat.
- Whisk the egg white-sugar mixture with a hand blender, starting with a speed of 2 and increase it later to 3 or 4.
- Whisk this mixture till it is glossy, shiny and peaks begin to form. Stop once you get nice and stiff peaks.
- Place this bowl over a bowl filled with ice cubes and some cold water.
- Add cubes of butter one by one at a time and keep mixing it at lowest speed, ensuring each of the addition is well incorporated into it, before adding another cube of butter.
- When all the butter is used up, you will find that the buttercream has turned slightly curdled, stop at once and start folding the frosting with spatula.
- This is the time to add any flavorings.
- Add the mango pulp little by little and keep folding it into the buttercream till you get a smooth and satiny texture. Do this with gentle and light hand.
Butter should be softened at room temperature and cut into cubes for ease of mixing it.
Eggs - cold eggs are easy to separate. So take the eggs out from the fridge and separate it immediately. Store the egg yolks back in the fridge and leave the egg whites on counter for around 10 minutes or you can keep them over bowl of warm water too.
Buttercream frosting test - when the egg whites-sugar mix is whipped to stiff peaks, leave that peaks for around 2 minute. If the peaks still holds its shape after 2-3 minute, your frosting will hold its shape when you will pipe the designs.
SMBC - these gives a smooth finish and hence can be used under the fondant cover too.