Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Swiss Buttercream


It’s so good, you could almost eat it by itself.

Swiss Buttercream
Printable Recipe

4 ounces egg whites
8 ounces sugar
1 ounce corn syrup
10 ounces (2 ½ sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

Whisk together the egg whites, sugar, and corn syrup in the bowl of a stand mixer. Place the bowl over a medium pan of simmering water, and heat, whisking constantly, until an instant-read thermometer registers 141˚F. In a mixer fitted with a whip attachment, whip the egg white mixture on high until cooled to room temperature. With the motor running on high, add the butter a tablespoon at a time, whipping for a few seconds after each addition until just combined, and stopping the mixer once or twice to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Continue to whip on high until light and fluffy.

Makes more than enough to frost a layer cake or 2 dozen cupcakes. You can flavor this buttercream however you like. For vanilla buttercream, beat in 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract. For chocolate buttercream, beat in 1 teaspoon vanilla extract plus 5 ounces chopped semisweet chocolate or 2/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips, melted and cooled slightly. Buttercream keeps for about a week tightly sealed in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature and rewhip until light and fluffy before using.

28 comments:

day said...

Does Swiss Buttercream hold together? I have the worst time with buttercreams but they're my favorite. I've never made the swiss kind. Last night I made a chocolate strawberry buttercream and plain strawberry buttercream. Though sweet and delightful it doesn't hold the decoration.

Lucy Vaserfirer said...

Day,
It really does work beautifully. Of course, if it's too warm, it can melt. Good luck!

HL said...

Hi Lucy,

This is totally unrelated but i was wondering if you can help me with this. The other day I made a chocolate ganache. After it cooled, there was a layer of oil on top of my ganache. Why is that so?

dextershaven said...

I have a question, one you may or may not know the answer to. I have not made your recipe yet, but it is pretty much the same as the one I use; often the buttercream is as it should be, but other times, it becomes a curdled mess and will not correct itself no matter what I do.

I'm careful to have everything at the right temperature, so I'm wondering if the freshness of the egg whites could have any bearing.

I have read a lot about using white that were separated days in advance when making macarons and other merignue cookies, but I'm not sure if that applies to merignues in general. You think my eggs might be too fresh?

Lucy Vaserfirer said...

HL,
Most likely the ganache broke because the cream became too hot and boiled too long, reducing before it was added to the chocolate. If the cream reduced, there was less liquid to fat in the ganache, which can cause the fat to separate. In the future, try just heating the cream to a bare simmer. Better luck next time, and let me know how it goes!

Lucy Vaserfirer said...

dextershaven,
It’s difficult for me to say exactly what’s causing your buttercream to break, but I don’t think it’s because your egg whites are too fresh. Are you sure that both your meringue and your butter are at room temperature when you begin combining them?

Melissa said...

I have to make a cake thursday for a party on friday. Can I frost said cake thursday and fridge it successfully, do you think, or will the frosting be a weird consistency? (clearly i would let it warm at room temp a bit before serving)
Thanks!

Lucy Vaserfirer said...

Melissa,
Absolutely. Just like butter, the buttercream will harden when chilled, and then it will soften again when you bring the cake back to room temperature for serving.

Zerogluten said...

Hello, I am Spanish and I write to you in line with a translator, so I hope that it is understood to me. You would be so amiable to say to me what is the equivalence of ounces to grams? Thank you very much and a greeting without gluten

Lucy Vaserfirer said...

Zerogluten,
Please try an online ounce to gram converter like this one.

Melissa said...

Lucy,
Thanks for answering my earlier question. I made the birthday cake I had mentioned. I used this frosting (I ended up adding 2oz extra of chocolate for a bit more punch) and your caramel pastry cream, which I have made twice before and I LOVE. It was delicious and beautiful and is possibly the thing I have baked that I am most proud of, if I do say so myself. I am so glad that I discovered your blog! Thank you so much!

Lucy Vaserfirer said...

Melissa,
I'm so happy to hear about your baking success! Thanks for sharing.

Zerogluten said...

Very many thanks for your information. You have been very amiable besides being a great cook. Congratulations. Little kisses without gluten

dextershaven said...

Thanks. I think in future, I'll use a thermometer to check butter and egg white temperatures to be sure they are the same- maybe that will ensure a good result.

Zahra said...

Hi, I was wondering how many egg whites equals 4 ounces? thanks!

Lucy Vaserfirer said...

Zahra,
A large egg white weighs 1 ounce, on average. So 4 large egg whites should equal about 4 ounces.

Swati said...

'Hi is it possible to make a buttercream frosting without cake? or by replacing it with any other substitute? such as No Egg?

Lucy Vaserfirer said...

Swati,
Are you concerned about some sort of egg allergy? Of course you can put this buttercream on whatever you like, whether it’s an egg-free cake or anything else. Also, it’s possible to make buttercream without eggs, but it wouldn’t be as fluffy, and it wouldn’t be considered a Swiss Buttercream. Have a look at the buttercream in this recipe.

Erin O. said...

I love this buttercream! I made it awhile ago and put it in the middle of green tea macarons. You can check them out on my blog. :)

Anonymous said...

I FORGOT AND STIRRED MINE WHEN IT WAS WARM, JUST LEAVE THE BLENDER ON IT TOOK A WHILE (10 MINUTES MAYBE) BUT THE FROSTING CAME OUT PERFECT.

veromart said...

I would love to make this buttercream for cupcakes . the problem is that they are for saturday night and I won't be able to frost them that same day , I have to do it friday afternoon ,
What do you suggest ?? wil the buttercream hold 24 hours without refrigeration ? or should I put the frosted cupcake in the refrigerator ?
Thanks
Veronica

Lucy Vaserfirer said...

veromart,
It depends on what you use to flavor the buttercream. Cupcakes with vanilla or chocolate buttercream can be stored at room temperature. But cupcakes with buttercream flavored with fresh fruit puree should be refrigerated and then brought to room temperature before serving.

Bron said...

when you say a whip attachment, do you mean a whisk attachment or like a paddle attachment? really looking forward to trying this recipe!

Lucy Vaserfirer said...

Bron,
The whip attachment is the one that looks like a whisk. It’s used for making things like whipped cream and meringues.

SRM13 said...

Is there a viable substitute for corn syrup? I read online that for the taste simple syrup is a good one but for the consistency honey is best. What do you suggest?

Lucy Vaserfirer said...

SRM13,
If you want to avoid corn syrup, the best bet is probably to just omit it. Simple syrup is not a good substitute, and honey would change the flavor too much.

Anonymous said...

I have never used corn syrup in my swiss buttercream. Does it makes buttercream more stable?

Lucy Vaserfirer said...

Anonymous,
The corn syrup seems to make the buttercream a bit more smooth.

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