Yes.....I know, I have a problem! I blame my good friend Monica Hobbs (caterer extraordinaire). It's sad when our friends lead us down the path to addiction....but there you have it.....I am addicted to Swiss Meringue Buttercream! I'm sure there isn't a 12 step program for this, but there probably should be.
It all started so innocently....I was helping her with an event at her venue, the beautiful Nimitz Mansion (shameless plug), and she asked me to make the frosting for her cupcakes. This was way back before I was into eating cupcakes (less than a year ago) and I had never tasted her frosting. So I followed her instructions and they seemed simple enough until this huge mixture began to have a horrible curdled look to it. I panicked.....Monica did not...she said "just wait, leave it alone and let it keep whipping and it will all come together". I had very little faith but did as I was told and what do you know.....this gorgeous, glossy frosting appeared before me. That was all fine until I tasted it.....HEAVEN!!! I was hooked! This is the lightest buttercream.....it is not too sweet, melts in your mouth, has a beautiful glossy look to it, and pipes perfectly! Oh, let's not forget, you can flavor it with anything you like and tint it with any color you like!
It just made sense that as I started making cupcakes for my blog, I would start experimenting with this frosting. There are not many different recipes out there, most of them use the same ingredients and the same amounts of each ingredient. I needed a written recipe to follow the first time I made it on my own and I chose Martha Stewart's recipe from her website. This makes a basic Swiss Meringue Buttercream to which you can add anything. I used the plain version of this for my Angry Bird Cupcakes and Mario Brothers Cupcakes. You have also seen me add my homemade caramel sauce and even store bought caramel sauce for my Toffee Crunch Cupcakes. All with great success!
For this particular cupcake I wanted to try chocolate. I had never done this before, so I had to guess on the amounts of chocolate to use. I started by melting 8 oz of really good quality dark chocolate (72%) over a double boiler and then putting it aside to cool to room temperature. Then, when the frosting was just past it's "curdled" stage I added vanilla and the melted chocolate. I added a little chocolate at a time and tasted as I went along to see how flavorful it was. I ended up using all 8 oz and the flavor was great, definitely chocolatey but not too rich and not overpowering.
I used this frosting on my Vanilla Bean Cupcakes and they were a perfect match. This was not a heavy, too sweet cupcake. It was light and yummy with clean flavors, easy to eat too many of them at one time (big problem, I know)!
You have to try this frosting! Make any flavor you wish and I guarantee you will become addicted like I am!!
Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream (Adapted from Martha Stewart)
5 large egg whites
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
Pinch of salt
1 pound (4 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons, room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
8 oz quality dark chocolate, melted and cooled to room temperature
Combine egg whites, sugar, and salt in the heatproof bowl of a standing mixer set over a pan of simmering water. Whisk constantly by hand until mixture is warm to the touch and sugar has dissolved (the mixture should feel completely smooth when rubbed between your fingertips).
Attach the bowl to the mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Starting on low and gradually increasing to medium-high speed, whisk until stiff (but not dry) peaks form. Continue mixing until the mixture is fluffy and glossy, and completely cool (test by touching the bottom of the bowl), about 10 minutes.
With mixer on medium-low speed, add the butter, a tablespoon at a time, and continue mixing. Do not get concerned if the mixture begins to look curdled, just keep beating and it will soon come back to a smooth and glossy frosting. Once all butter has been added, mix in vanilla and melted chocolate. Beat until frosting is completely smooth. Keep buttercream at room temperature if using the same day.
This recipe is shared on:
Foodie Friends Friday
My Turn for Us: Linky Party
Chocolate, Chocolate and More "Thursdays Treasures"