What do you look for when eating something with frosting? Does it taste good? Is it too sweet? Does it taste buttery or is it flavored? Is it made of flour, eggs, or a custard? Does it immediately melt in your mouth when you take a bite or does it have a crunchy outer layer?
Any of these descriptions can be a buttercream frosting.
One of the key indicators of a good buttercream frosting recipe that many people look for is a buttercream that is not gritty whatsoever. “Silky”, “smooth”, “creamy”, “light”, and “fluffy” frosting are the words that describe what people want in their frosting, not a gritty one.
A “gritty” frosting is caused by the undissolved powdered sugar that is common in American buttercream. Since the powdered sugar is merely mixed into butter and isn’t allowed to really dissolve, the texture of the frosting is less smooth and silky than any of the other frostings. Plus, the amount of powdered sugar you need to create a stiff enough texture you need for it to hold its shape when piped as well is quite a lot. An average American buttercream is commonly made with a ratio of 1 part butter to 4 parts powdered sugar.
It’s the grittiness that makes many intermediate and advanced bakers turn to the more advanced aka complex buttercreams that require cooking the sugar and using egg whites, flour, and other ingredients to make their icing. (There are at least 6 kinds of buttercream frostings you can make.)
However, not every baker is an experienced baker or even an intermediate baker. Some bakers want an easy recipe that isn’t going to be complicated. Say hello to the sweetened condensed milk frosting, otherwise known as Russian buttercream.
This may look like the easiest buttercream recipe to make since it only requires two main ingredients, sweetened condensed milk and butter, but it’s a little tricky to make. This buttercream is one of those recipes that break the rules. That’s because, for this buttercream, you don’t use softened butter. You actually need to use cold butter. Even the sweetened condensed milk should be cold, too, and the best, probably the only way to really make this frosting is by using an electric mixer.
The recipe is very easy to remember. Mix equal parts butter and sweetened condensed milk. Here’s how to make it:
- 1. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, place 1 cup cold butter. Using the whisk attachment, cream the butter until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes depending on how cold your butter was when you started.
- 2. Once light and fluffy, add 1 cup sweetened condensed milk, chilled. Beat into the butter until light, fluffy, and spreadable. Stir in your desired extract flavoring.
One of the tips shared by many of those who tried this frosting agreed that it may look like it has curdled or separated, but don’t stop whisking. The tip is to keep going until it all comes together and forms the silky smooth buttercream you might have made using a more complicated recipe.
Thinking about what to cook next? Join our Facebook group, Yummy Pinoy Cooking Club, to get more recipe ideas, share your own dishes, and find out what the rest of the community are making and eating!
Got your own version of the classic dishes? Pa-share naman! Get your recipe published on Yummy.ph by submitting your recipe here!