I’m not particularly fond of icings and frostings. But my almost 18-year-old daughter, Sam, loves decorating cakes. She likes to tint icing and frosting with bright colors and she likes to use the piping bag with different tips.
So, I learned to make buttercream icing. The first time I attempted it, I made a mess thinking it was just butter, powdered sugar and a little milk. Unfortunately, the mixture was too thin for spreading. The more I beat the mixture, the soften the butter became and the thinner the icing.
I searched and researched and finally came up with a better formula. It turns out that by combining butter with vegetable shortening, the icing becomes more firm and spreadable. I made some buttercream icing today, Sam colored it blue and spread over the mini cakes I baked earlier.
Based on a recipe from Wilton. Makes 1-1/2 c. of buttercream icing.
1/4 c. of butter softened
1/4 c. of butter-flavored vegetable shortening (I used Crisco)
about 2 c. of sifted powdered sugar
1 tbsp. of full cream milk
In a bowl, beat together the butter and shortening. Add the powdered sugar in batches, about half a cup each time, mixing after each addition. Taste the icing, check the consistency, add more sugar if you prefer. When you’re satisfied with the flavor and texture, add the milk, stir until smooth and the icing is ready.