The process of creating meringue powder starts by drying egg whites, then mixing them with cornstarch and gum, creating the white powder we know as Meringue Powder. Flavorings like vanilla are often added, partially to cut down on the slightly starchy taste of the meringue powder. If you don’t like the flavor of meringue powder you should play around with how much flavoring you add because sometimes depending on the brand you are using the flavor of the meringue powder can be very strong.
With regards to your class buttercream recipe, we are adding meringue powder because it acts as a stabilizer, keeping the shortening in the recipe (or half shortening/half butter depending on how you made it) as well as the other liquids in the recipe from breaking down. You can also use the meringue powder to add body to boiled icing and regular meringue (think pie...mmmm pie sounds good right now! Blackberry cream pie....). Oh, sorry! Back to meringue powder...
I’ve talked about shortening in your buttercream, so let's waltz right into meringue powder. Sorry, I couldn't resist! I know a few of you have commented on how meringue powder looks and smells etc. but more importantly you’ve asked why we need it in your class buttercream recipe....so what the heck is it?
Well....Meringue powder as you know from looking at it is a fine white powder. It’s made primarily from dried egg whites…..it does have cornstarch in it, to keep it from clumping while stored and some food gums. Food gums, what the heck? The food gums help the meringue bind together easier when your whipping it up. Once reconstituted with water and beaten at high speed, you get fluffy meringue.
The primary advantage of meringue powder is that it is pasteurized. Pasteurized equals less potential for food borne illness such as salmonella, or "sammynella" as my little sister use to call it growing up. This trait makes it ideal for recipes which call for uncooked egg whites.
Every time I hear the words Meringue Powder I think about dancing and that's exactly what meringue does...it dances around in the bowl forming graceful peaks that look like a couple floating around the dance floor. And when the song ends (that would be the humming of my mixer) and I lift the whip attachment up I'm always amazed by the transformation that's taken place.
Adding meringue powder to many of your dark colored butter creams (navy, red, black, etc) keeps them from bleeding, says Rhoda Sheridan, Member of Epicurean Delights.
It can also be used in place of egg whites in most recipes, but only when the recipe calls for egg whites; it cannot replace a whole egg. You can also add a tablespoon or two of meringue powder to your cake mix or a cake batter recipe to add volume to the cake.
I was asked about a “natural” substitution for the meringue powder....there is no substitution for meringue powder it's self. However, you could use fresh egg whites or pasteurized egg whites but you would have to make a boiled icing recipe to use that method. Boiled icing....that's a whole other topic! One of which I will delightfully cover at some point! ;-) But for now, let's stick to the basics!
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Next week we will begin our 3 part series on creating Rustic Chic Sugar Cookies. We will be using a couple different mediums including, fondant, wafer paper and royal icing. You will also learn how to use silicone molds and how to dust your cookies for a rustic look.
In anticipation of next weeks kick off I thought it would be great to share with you our Sugar Cookie baking tutorial This video tutorial will show you how to make the most delicious sugar cookies! Our own Susan Carberry will step you through mixing up your ingredients and how to bake them correctly to ensure the perfect sugar cookie!
On Thursday we will post our Royal Icing video tutorial also by Susan as this is another medium you will be working with in our cookie series.
Learn to make sugar cookies with celebrated cake artist Susan Carberry. Learn her favorite sugar cookie recipe for perfect cookies every time!
Cookie decorating, baking, sugar cookies, cookie video tutorial, cookie recipe, recipes, sugar cookie dough
Attach using water.
Feet - Mix a tiny bit of orange fondant into the yellow fondant, roll out and cut for the feet. Use the veining tool to add lines for the toes.
Beak - Roll a small ball of the tinted yellow fondant into a teardrop shape and attach the large end beneath the eyes in the center. Use the small embroidery scissors to cut open the beak.
Bake Cookies using Susan's favorite Sugar Cookie Recipe and Susan Carberry Designs owl cutter. Let cool.
The Body- Lighten some of the chocolate fondant by kneading it with a bit of white fondant. Roll out and cut using the owl cutter.
Using a small pizza cutter or palette knife cut off the lower end of the owl where the feet would be. Use a veining tool to draw lines in the fondant to resemble feathers.
Eyes - Roll out white fondant and cut two large and small circles using the makins round cutter set. Roll out dark chocolate fondant and cut out two medium size circles using the middle Makin's cutter and two small circles using the #10 Decorator Tip.
By Susan Carberry, Owner
The Cake Cottage
It's that time of year; Graduation! Why note create these cute Owl cookies for your Grads party!
Belly - Mix white fondant with a bit of chocolate fondant to create tan. Roll into a long teardrop shape approx 2in long and flatten. Attach to the center of the owls body and use the embroidery scissors to cut v shapes creating texture.
Diploma - Roll out white fondant and cut into a 1 1/2 in wide by 2 1/4in tall strip. Roll the top end down and the bottom end under.
Attach using water. Dry Dust the edges using Classic Gold Sterling Pearl and use tip #2 with black royal icing for the inscription.
Highlights - Dry Dust the Orange Sterling Pearl on the beak and feet.
Cap - Melt the black chocolate in the microwave slowly to prevent burning. Be sure to stir it in between 15 second intervals. Pour into the candy mold. Tap the mold on the counter to release any air bubbles and place in freezer for 5 to 7 minutes. The caps should release easily by themselves. Attach the the two pieces together using a bit more of the melted chocolate.
Roll out a cord of blue fondant, cut in half and place the pieces next to each other. Twist them together to create the rope. Place blue fondant into the tassel mold and release. Attach rope cord, then the tassel and finish it off with a tiny ball of blue fondant on the top of the rope in the center of the hat. Mix the Classic Gold with lemon extract and paint highlights of gold on the tassel and rope.
My Grandma passed away in March. She was known for her cookies. In fact some of her cookie recipes are the ones I use in my own shop. So when asked to bake cookies for her service, I wanted to do something that reflected some of the things that remind me of her.
The colors of spring, as that was the start of gardening season for grandma and her favorite time of year. The color yellow because she loved the sun, she would spend countless hours gardening in the sunshine and have the best tan. The flowers and patterns on the cookies reflect the many floral patterns found on sweatshirts and casual shirts my Grandma always wore. And the leaves represent all the things that grew in her yard. From the large trees we use to climb as kids, the grape vines grandma use to make jelly from, to the apple trees that produced countless mason jars of apple sauce and apple butter. The tunnel of Bridal Veil that produced the most dainty flowers that when the wind would blow covered the ground in white flower confetti. And of course the vegetables that grew in her garden. My mom and I would always fight over who got the lemon cucumbers, our favorite.
All my creations tell a story, but this one tells a very special story about an amazing Grandma who also baked the most delicious cookies.
How I created them
I created these cookies using my favorite sugar cookie recipe. From there I made white chocolate, modeling chocolate in three colors; white, green and yellow. Next, I iced the cookies in a thin layer of SMBC, then placed a disc of modeling chocolate cut out of the same cookie cutter I used for cutting out the cookies.
I used a number of beautiful edible images from Luck's to create the flowers on the cookies. I used Sizzix floral dies to cut the flowers out of the sugar sheets. Once cut I pulled the backing off and centered the flowers on the cookies.
For the leaves, I used the same cutter I cut the cookies out, with my green modeling chocolate. I placed the green leaf on top of the sugar cookie, thinly iced with SMBC. I used a veining tool to create the veining on the leaves. The SMBC under the modeling chocolate helps create more of a 3D effect to the veining of the leaves.
In part two of our two part tutorial you will be making the lace floral toppers for your cupcakes.
The process is very much the same as last weeks scalloped cupcake topper, but we will also be using a mold to create cute centers for our flowers.
These cupcake cakes look cute on display in alternation petal and center colors. The addition of pearl luster dust really makes the lace design pop on the flower petals and on the center.
You can use an floral fondant cutter to achieve this look or even use a floral cookie cutter.
Feel free to download the full pdf version here!
Tags: Shabby Chic Cupcakes, Cupcakes, Fondant Cupcakes, Satin Ice Fondant, Rose Cupcakes, Plaque Cupcakes, Cupcake Tutorials, Baking, Cake Decorating
Shabby Chic continues to be a trend in cake decorating. Michele Hopps, of Epicurean Delights shows you how to create scalloped lace fondant cupcake toppers to jazz up your cupcake display.
If you are new to cake decorating and haven't had much experience with fondant, this is a great starting point. This simple to follow tutorial will have you creating fun toppers in no time!
Alternate the colors of your toppers on your cupcakes for a beautiful display.
A pdf version of the tutorial can be downloaded for free in our Online Shop.
Tags: Cupcakes, Fondant Cupcake Toppers, Shabby Chic Cupcakes, Satin Ice Fondant, Simple Cupcakes