Wednesday, June 23, 2010

For Paula and Amanda...

My daughter, Paula, is used to me making all the birthday cakes for her family. Well, this year they live in Hawaii, and it's a little difficult for me to ship a birthday cake there. We have been corresponding on the phone and through email, as she is attempting to decorate the first birthday cake for one of her girls. My daughter-in-law, Amanda is in Connecticut and we have also been communicating via email about a birthday cake she is making for another granddaughter, who just happens to have her birthday on the same day as the oldest granddaughter in Hawaii, just a year later. So, because Paula just took Lexi to see Toy Story 3, she is attempting to make a cake with Jessie from Toy Story on it. Lucy is into princesses this year, so Amanda is making a princess doll cake for her party on Saturday. I will be excited to see the final results of both cakes. So you won't have to hunt all over my blog for the buttercream recipe, I am reprinting it. This is the size recipe I use most of the time because I usually need more icing. It will ice and decorate a 1/2 sheet cake nicely. 

Buttercream Icing

2 cups Crisco shortening
1 cup softened salted butter (2 cubes)
Butter vanilla
3/4 t. salt
12 cups sifted powdered sugar (measure after sifting)
5/8 - 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream

You need a heavy mixer (like a Kitchenaid) to make this recipe. Beat the Crisco and butter together with the salt and butter vanilla with the flat beater on your mixer for about 5-10 minutes until light and fluffy. (Using the flat beater instead of the wire whisk will keep your icing smoother and without air bubbles.) Gradually add about 4 cups of the sifted powdered sugar at a time, making sure it is completely mixed before adding more. As I do this, I usually cover the bowl with a kitchen towel to avoid getting sugar everywhere. I have learned that from experience. After all the sugar is added, gradually add the cream a little at a time, beating slowly until nice and fluffy. Start out with the smaller amount, and add more to make the proper consistency you need. Use less for a nice crusting buttercream or making decorations and more for a "whipped cream" consistency. When making chocolate buttercream, add the desired amount of cocoa along with the sugar and a bit more cream. You may also add a small amount of corn syrup. If I am icing the entire cake in chocolate buttercream, I will sometimes use all salted butter in the recipe instead of Crisco. If you do this, make sure you decrease the amount of salt to 1/4 tsp. 

Happy decorating, Paula and Amanda, and anyone else reading my blog!! ...and happy bithday Lexi and Lucy!!!
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