My sister used to bake cakes a lot when we were growing up. She often decorated her cakes with buttercream, something I really didn’t like. It was made from a simple recipe, which called for equal amounts (mass) of butter and icing (powdered) sugar. It was just so dense and cloyingly sweet! What was worse, was that she used catering margarine instead of butter - eurgh…
It was only in the last year that I discovered meringue based buttercream, and even then the recipe did not convince me to try it. The only reason I tried was after we sampled a few cupcakes in Portland, and they were delicious. I was quite shocked!
This chocolate meringue based buttercream is packed full of flavour, barely sweet, light, creamy and oh so delicious! It also doesn’t form that horrible crust as many other frostings do.
I halved the recipe, and found that it was plenty for 20-24 cupcakes, maybe I’m just a little more stingy on the frosting than Rachel. It must be noted, the beating process takes forever, and I mean forever, but you must continue, even when you think that you have ruined/split the mixture. I got so inpatient A. continued doing the work for me! You can also thank him for the beautiful swirls he piped onto the cupcakes!
After making this flavor, I am waiting for an excuse to make the pineapple version!
CHOCOLATE MERINGUE BUTTERCREAM FROSTING
Makes enough for about 20-24 cupcakes
- 170 g (6 oz) dark (bittersweet) chocolate, roughly chopped.
- 2 1/2 tablespoons water
- 250 g (2 c and 1 tablespoon) icing (powdered) sugar
- 5 large egg whites
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extrct
- 454 g (2 c) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1. Melt together the cocolate and water in a double boiler (bowl over simmering water), then set aside and cool to room temperature. You can also do this step in the microwave by heating in short bursts, to ensure that the chocolate is not scorched.
2. Gently heat the sugar and egg whites in a bowl over the simmering water, whisk gently to help the sugar dissolve. Check that the sugar has fully dissolved by rubbing the mixture between your fingers, it shoul feel smooth. Transfer the egg white mixture to a stand mixer bowl.
3. Using the whisk atachment, beat the mixture on high speed until the mixture forms stiff and glossy peaks, about 10-15 minutes.
4. Whilst the mixer is on medium speed, add the vanilla, and then the butter, one tablespoon at a time. The mixture will appear curdled, but be patient; continue to beat until smooth.
5. Add melted chocolate and beat on medium high until well incorporated, scraping down the mix if necessary.
6. Use to decorate cupcakes, cakes or whatever you fancy. Enjoy!