Delicately Delicious Baking Mixes FAQ’S
1. I WHIPPED THE BUTTER AND PACKET 2, BUT IT SEEMS GRAINY/GRITTY – Be sure to keep scraping down the bowl every few minutes, and also keep whipping at a medium speed. Your goal here is to get a light and fluffy texture while allowing the sugar to melt in the butter. Beating at a high speed may cause this to occur faster, but it will also create additional air bubbles. If making cupcakes this won’t be a problem, but if you are trying to get a really smooth, fondant type look to your finished product these air bubbles will make that more difficult.
2. I HAVE LEFT OVER FROSTING
a. CAN I FREEZE IT? YES! Left over frosting can be stored in an airtight container in the freezer. For best results, transfer the container to the fridge 2 days prior to use, then to the counter until room temp and re-whip (if in a time pinch, you can skip this step). If you don’t want to wait, place in microwave for 45 seconds. Try to stir/break up buttercream. Microwave at 30-second intervals, stirring and incorporating as the buttercream gets warmer/more pliable. Once buttercream is coming back together and getting to a uniform room temp, it can be re-whipped. PLEASE NOTE – if you try to whip the buttercream before it is room temp it may look watery, lumpy, or broken. Click here if that happens!
b. REFRIDGERATE IT? If you plan to use the buttercream in less than one week, place in the fridge in an airtight container. When ready to use, let sit on counter to get to room temp, then re-whip. If you are in a hurry, you can microwave at 30-second intervals, stirring to distribute heat until room temp. Then re-whip. PLEASE NOTE – if you try to whip the buttercream before it is room temp it may look watery, lumpy, or broken. Click here if that happens!
3. MY FROSTING LOOKS BROKEN. When buttercream is too cold it will look watery, lumpy, or broken. If this happens, we recommend taking half the amount left and continuing to heat it at 30-second intervals until it comes to room temperature. It may feel counter-intuitive to heat the buttercream more when it looks watery and separated, but this will improve the creaminess. When butter is too cold, the water will separate from the fat. If you take it too far and it becomes melted, then you can beat in the other half, otherwise repeat re-warming with the second half. It also helps to re-whip with a stand mixer or hand-held electric mixer vs. by hand.
4. MY FROSTING IS TOO RUNNY/MELTED. If you end up with a melty consistency that is difficult to work with, just pop your bowl of frosting in the fridge for 3-5 minutes at a time. Stir in-between intervals until the temperature goes down enough to restore a spreadable texture. DON’T DISPARE IF YOU FROSTING IS REALLY MELTY, as it cools it will look odd, but when it gets to a cooler temp and you re-whip it, it will come back together!
5. HOW MUCH FROSTING DO I NEED FOR……
a. FILLING A CAKE? It depends on personal preference of course! Some people can forgo cake all together and just want buttercream by the spoonful, while others like the cake to be the star. For an 8 or 9 inch cake we recommend planning 1-1.5 cups of frosting for each layer of filling you need. For a 10 inch cake 1.5-2 cups per layer.
b. FINISHING? If you are crumb coating your cake, allow for about ½ cup of buttercream, then an additional 2-2.5 cups of buttercream to finish an 8-9 inch cake. If you are a beginner you may want reserve a bit more frosting for finishing.
c. CUPCAKES? Again, this is personal preference, but you will easily be able to generously ice at least 36 cupcakes.
6. CAN I DYE THE FROSTING? Yes! We recommend using a gel based food coloring. These can be found at specialty stores or craft stores. These dyes are more brilliant in color and add less liquid to your buttercream, which prevents separation. If you are attempting to make your buttercream a deep color, such as black, red, or navy keep in mind that these shades require A LOT of dye. The color will deepen over time, so let your buttercream sit a bit to see how the color develops before adding more dye. Another trick to deeper colors is to dye it in smaller batches and then mix the batches together. Our experience is that is takes a lot more dye to get the shade you want with a very large batch. An excess of dye can create a great color, but also stains mouths (and furniture!) and can have an off taste.
7. WHY DO I HAVE TO REFRIDGERATE THE FROSTING? The buttercream contains milk, milk powder, and butter. These ingredients are perishable at room temperature, and can spoil when left at room temperature greater than 4 hours. Please store your buttercream at 38-41 degrees, but serve at room temperature to get the creamy texture. It is a hassle, but it will keep you and your fellow cake lovers safe!
8. TIPS FOR ADDING FLAVORS
a. Too much liquid is the peril of adding flavor to your buttercream.
i. When possible use concentrated flavors such as extract, reduced fruit purees, pie fillings or fruit curds. These will give you the maximum flavor punch without breaking your buttercream.
ii. If you are set on using a puree, try these tips to improve/maintain texture without sacrificing flavor.
1. Drain the excess water out with a sieve and add the “fruit mash” to the buttercream. (You could reduce the liquid and add it later too).
2. Use a quality complimentary extract, in place of or in addition to puree. Lor-Ann has a lot of fun flavors that you may not be able to find at the grocery store
iii. Use an extract version of the flavor you want. For instance, instead of using actual root beer, use a root beer extract.
iv. Layer flavors. To increase the punch of lemon to our lemon layer cake, we add a thin layer of pucker lemon curd on our cake layers prior to lemon buttercream. Use just a small amount, as if spreading a thin layer of jam on toast. Or add fresh fruit on top of buttercream between each cake layer.
v. Brush your cake layers with flavored simple syrup. This has the added benefit of keeping your cake layers moist.
b. Avoid mistakes by running a small sample batch. Take a cup of buttercream and add your flavoring to it to see how it holds and to approximate how much flavoring you will need to achieve the flavor intensity that your want. Some flavorings, like peppermint extract, require only a small amount for intense flavor. Others, like coconut extract or coconut milk may need more to get the coconut flavor you want.