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Swiss Meringue Buttercream

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Level: Intermediate

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Description

A silky and smooth frosting for cakes, cupcakes, or cookies.

Frosts one 2 or 3-layer cake, 24 cupcake or cookies.

From Bridget Edwards of Bake at 350.

Ingredients

  • 4  Egg Whites
  • 1-½ cup Granulated Sugar
  • 1-½ cup Unsalted Butter, Room Temperature And Cut Into Tablespoons
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 teaspoon Almond Extract
  • 1 pinch Fine Sea Salt

Preparation

Place egg whites and sugar in a metal bowl of a stand mixer. Place bowl over a pan of simmering water, not touching the water. Whisk or stir constantly until sugar is dissolved and mixture comes to approximately 160ºF. If attempting without a thermometer, sugar should be dissolved with no graininess when a bit is rubbed between two fingers. It will be hot to the touch.

Immediately place the bowl on the stand mixer and whip on high using the whisk attachment until frosting has become thick and glossy, forming a stiff peak. Continue to whip frosting until the bowl feels room temperature to the touch, a total of about 10 minutes.

Switch the whisk attachment to the paddle attachment. With the mixer on low, drop in butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until smooth after each addition. If frosting appears curdled or clumpy at any time, increase speed to medium-high and beat until smooth.

Once all of the butter has been incorporated, mix in extracts and pinch of salt. If needed, continue beating until smooth.

To frost cookies or cupcakes with the rose technique, tint frosting to the desired shade. Dollop frosting into a piping bag fitted with an Ateco #828 tip. Pipe frosting in a swirl, starting in the middle. For the watercolor effect, paint lines of a contrasting color food coloring up the sides of the bag before filling.

Sweets frosted with Swiss meringue buttercream may be stored on the counter for a few days, or in the refrigerator. If storing in the refrigerator, bring to room temperature before serving.

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