Did you know that creating your own buttercream flavors is the simplest Building on Recipes technique there is?
You can create just about any flavor under the sun and add it straight away into the base recipe of Swiss Buttercream?
Probably the strangest request I ever got was for Marzipan Buttercream!
I had not heard of that one before, but I was so glad I did because it was fabulous!
So I set off to recreate those flavors for her in one really neat layer cake to serve about 20 people!
There is just one thing to keep in mind when you start experimenting with adding this or that to the buttercream.
DO NOT OVER SATURATE.
Buttercream is an oil based formula (butter=fat)
Oil and water (in the form of purees, or extracts or emulsions) do not typically mix well together.
So a certain amount of vigorous blending will do the trick, but watch carefully as you add the flavorings.
You will see if the mixture starts to separate or “break” this means over saturation and once you get to that point, there ain’t no going back!
Unless of course you add more buttercream to even out the ratios.
Much of the flavorings are “to taste” and when I say this, it simply means, start with a tablespoon of extract or emulsion and then taste it.
Purees are not the greatest to add, since their concentration of flavor is not as pronounced as an extract or emulsion, so you will tend to want to add more to the buttercream causing breakage.
Oh yeah, and in the fall- I do not hesitate to add Pumpkin Puree too!
Typically about a cup of puree to the entire recipe of buttercream
I always recommend adding extracts or emulsion along with the purees to give it that extra “uumphf” of flavor you are going for.
Candlyland Crafts has a wide selection of flavor oils and extracts that work great in my buttercream recipe.
They also ship worldwide!
I know many of you want a chart that says exactly how much of this to add to the buttercream, but not all BRANDS are crated equally!
I once purchased a mint extract from another source than what I was used to getting and Wowsers! It was like Listerine Mouthwash!
So again I prefer the “taste test”method versus me telling you to add a few tablespoons of something I don’t even know what you are using.
For example that Marzipan Buttercream I mentioned?
I didn’t have a recipe for it, so I experimented a little bit.
I took some very soft almond paste and smoothed it out even more in the kitchen aid with the paddle attachment and some warm water to thin it out.
I then added the buttercream a little at a time while mixing until it was all incorporated well.
Last, I hit it with about a teaspoon of almond extract and a tablespoon of Amaretto Disaronno (optional of course for those of you who do not like alcohol in your pastry).
It was out of this world!
I encourage you to play around with flavors whenever possible.
BE BRAVE GUYS! No recipe needed! Start to rely on your TASTEBUDS to guide you to perfect balances.
Just remember, anytime you add ANYTHING to an already soft base (like buttercream) it is going to get SOFTER!
So be prepared to refrigerate many flavored buttercreams not because they will go bad (unless you are using curds or custard of course) but because they are going to be super soft!
Here are just a few suggestions off the top of my head that you can achieve simply by adding some liquors, flavor oils or emulsions, extracts or fruit purees. Simply stir desired amount into the buttercream and off you go!! (Be sure to refrigerate accordingly if you are using an addition of fruit curds or egg rich custards)
- Baileys Irish Cream – add liquor
- Peanut Butter – add peanut butter
- Nutella – add nutella
- Lemon Custard Buttercream -add lemon Curd and lemon zest
- Boston Cream Pie Buttercream- add vanilla custard
- Coconut – add toasted coconut and coconut extract
- Key Lime – add key lime juice and grated lime zest
- Cinnamon- Duh!
- Kahlua- add instant coffee and Kahlua liquor
- Pineapple- add canned pineapple (drained first and patted dry)
- Marachino Cherry – add the Juice from the canned cherries