You know that beautiful ruffle piping technique from Sweetapolita? Gorgeous, isn't it. She makes it look so easy. Martha Stewart too, and not to mention many other bloggers. But mine just didn't come out right. It's a downright monstrosity. P.S. You may want to cover your eyes for these few photos.
My piping looks more like twisted ancient branches thanks to the colour of my caramel swiss meringue buttercream. I'm sorry to break your illusion that ruffle piping is a breeze. Maybe it really is, just that I did it wrongly. In fact, looking back, I've spotted some errors- I held my piping back almost 45 degrees instead of close to 90 degrees, i.e nearly parallel to the cake, and my buttercream was a little too soft.
Speaking of swiss meringue buttercream, I know it's supposed to curdle at one point after adding the butter but strangely enough, mine didn't. Perhaps my butter was too soft and mushy to begin with? And since we're on the subject of frostings, please listen to me on this- never use a thick layer of seven minute frosting to fill your cakes. It just doesn't hold up well, and within a day it will start to release water, causing your layers to slip and slide. Trust me, I know.
|i put maltesers in there too!|
Oh, and I still like the chocolate layer better.
Caramel Swiss Meringue Buttercream
from Martha Stewart
Make caramel: Pour 1/4 cup water into a medium heavy-bottom saucepan. Add 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until sugar is dissolved and syrup is clear. Continue to cook, without stirring, until syrup comes to a boil, washing down sides of pan with a wet pastry brush two or three times to prevent crystals from forming. Let syrup boil, gently swirling pan occasionally, until syrup is dark amber.
Immediately remove from heat; carefully pour in cream (caramel will bubble vigorously). Stir caramel until smooth. Transfer to a bowl; let cool.
Whisk together remaining 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, the egg whites, and salt in the heatproof bowl of a standing mixer. Set bowl over a pan of simmering water; whisk until sugar is dissolved and mixture registers 140 degrees on an instant-read thermometer.
Return bowl to mixer; fit mixer with whisk attachment. Beat on medium-high speed until stiff. Reduce speed to medium low; add butter, a few tablespoons at a time. Continue whisking until smooth.
Switch to paddle attachment. Add caramel and vanilla; beat on lowest speed until combined, 3 to 5 minutes.
Linked to These Chicks Cooked, Sweet Treats Thursday, Full Plate Thursday, Sweet Tooth Friday, Sweets for a Saturday, Sweet Indulgences Sunday.