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Old 19.09.2012, 21:12
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Swiss butter for cake frosting

We tried to make buttercream frosting for a birthday cake, but it came out so buttery tasting that it was almost inedible. The same recipe was great when used in the US.
Is there a difference between Swiss butter and American butter that I need to take into account when baking? Like different fat content or something?
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Old 19.09.2012, 21:16
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

Salt?

Which butter did you use?

Cook Butter, readily available from all stores, is probably the best one to use.
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Old 20.09.2012, 12:55
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

We used "Die Butter" from Cremo, available in Coop and Migros (green, blue, yellow and pink-striped wrapper), which says it's for cooking. Apparently not salted since doesn't mention it.
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Old 20.09.2012, 13:08
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

The butter here is made from milk. Maybe you should try a good quality margerine with added butter.
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Old 01.10.2012, 20:32
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

I presumed that butter was made from milk all over the world!

I would increase the powder sugar, 2parts sugar to 1part butter. And a pinch of salt. I also had to get used to the unsalted butter here
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Old 01.10.2012, 21:35
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

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We tried to make buttercream frosting for a birthday cake, but it came out so buttery tasting that it was almost inedible. The same recipe was great when used in the US.
Is there a difference between Swiss butter and American butter that I need to take into account when baking? Like different fat content or something?
A lot of butter in the US is 'whipped' and sometime, I think, mixed with buttermilk to give a more spreadable consistency. If you're comparing with 'real' butter there shouldn't be an appreciable difference in fat content, but it's certainly the case that some butters taste stronger than others.

I like butter. A lot. Unsalted only, but I actively like the flavour and am quite choosy about what I buy. Smell is the best indicator, so if you want
less flavour choose one that doesn't smell as nice

Or just use less of it, adding a bit of a light bland veggie oil (e.g. rapeseed) instead.
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Old 01.10.2012, 22:05
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

When I first came to Europe (38 years ago) I used to salt my buttered bread, but when I returned a year later, salted butter was a thing of the past, and has been since.

Of course, since moving to ZH in '86 and TI in '90, butter is mostly a thing of the past and olive oil (always virgin) is now the norm.

Tom
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Old 01.10.2012, 22:18
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

European butter does tend to have a slightly higher fat content, but only a few percent so it shouldn't have made quite that much of a difference in the taste and texture. I wouldn't recommend making it with margarine though. I used the square chunks of butter in wrappers, not the butter in the tubs, when making frostings in Switzerland and they came out alright. I wonder what happened. What recipe were you using?
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Old 01.10.2012, 22:35
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

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European butter does tend to have a slightly higher fat content, but only a few percent so it shouldn't have made quite that much of a difference in the taste and texture. I wouldn't recommend making it with margarine though. I used the square chunks of butter in wrappers, not the butter in the tubs, when making frostings in Switzerland and they came out alright. I wonder what happened. What recipe were you using?
I also have been making frosting for 14 years with the normal butter, no one has ever said a word except how much they like it, I use the normal unsalted butter. Never had to put salt in it. But if you want salted they sell it also at Coop, I use it only for popcorn.
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Old 02.10.2012, 00:00
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When I frost my cakes with buttercream I use less butter and more heavy cream (or a bit of cream cheese if I know the cake will be kept cool). I like buttercream but not if its too buttery. I also always add a bit of salt.
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Old 02.10.2012, 12:39
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

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When I first came to Europe (38 years ago) I used to salt my buttered bread, but when I returned a year later, salted butter was a thing of the past, and has been since.
I love salted butter on my bread. They do sell it in COOP (Fine Food - Fleur de Sel), but I also buy it in France (demi-sel). But only sweet butter for cakes/frosting because salted butter tends to have a higher water content.

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Of course, since moving to ZH in '86 and TI in '90, butter is mostly a thing of the past and olive oil (always virgin) is now the norm.

Tom
EVOO is also wonderful, and probably healthier
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Old 02.10.2012, 12:45
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

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We tried to make buttercream frosting for a birthday cake, but it came out so buttery tasting that it was almost inedible. The same recipe was great when used in the US.
Is there a difference between Swiss butter and American butter that I need to take into account when baking? Like different fat content or something?
IKWYM, I usually make buttercream frosting with Swiss or Italian Meringue (whip eggwhites, add hot simple syrup in a stream, whip till cool, then butter and flavorings). It's not as buttery and holds up a little better (not as runny).

I've also found adding a bit of powdered eggwhite helps stabilize the consistency a bit.
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Old 02.10.2012, 13:49
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

I made my son a birthday cake when we first moved here and I used the Coop's own brand unsalted butter mixed with icing sugar, chocolate powder and a bit of raw egg white (use lemon juice if this freaks you out). It made a really good choclate buttercream icing that did not run. Just keep mixing until you get the right consistency.

Hope this helps.
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Old 04.10.2012, 09:11
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

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European butter does tend to have a slightly higher fat content, but only a few percent so it shouldn't have made quite that much of a difference in the taste and texture. I wouldn't recommend making it with margarine though. I used the square chunks of butter in wrappers, not the butter in the tubs, when making frostings in Switzerland and they came out alright. I wonder what happened. What recipe were you using?
Here is the frosting recipe:

1/2 pound (227 g) unsalted butter, softened
1 large egg yolk (optional)
1 pound (452 g) confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons heavy cream (89 ml )
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (used 1 tsp vanilla paste)

Beat butter and egg yolk at medium-high speed until creamy. Beat in the confectioner's sugar at low speed. Beat in the cream, vanilla and salt, then beat at medium-high sped until fluffy, 3 minutes longer

Looking back at the recipe, I'm thinking now that the error was in the amount we used for the sugar, not in the butter. Think I got a bad conversion on the Internet in how many cups one pound of confectioner's sugar was equal to. Looks like should have used two cups, not one.

Thanks for helping me track down the likely problem, which wasn't the butter.
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Old 04.10.2012, 09:35
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

Do it the easy way and use a digital scale.

Tom
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Old 04.10.2012, 10:23
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

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Do it the easy way and use a digital scale.
Yes, and find proper, i.e. non-US, recipes that don't use such an archaic mix of weights and volumes in the first place.
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Old 24.01.2016, 13:56
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

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Salt?

Which butter did you use?

Cook Butter, readily available from all stores, is probably the best one to use.
I tried making buttercream with the cook butter. It taste good, but I have a hard time mixing it in and there was once I end up overbeating the whole buttercream and it was not smooth at all
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Old 24.01.2016, 20:35
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

Could some of the people who've made a good cake-frosting with Swiss ingredients and metric measurements please share those yummy recipes? Thanks.
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Old 24.01.2016, 21:54
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

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Could some of the people who've made a good cake-frosting with Swiss ingredients and metric measurements please share those yummy recipes? Thanks.
What are your criteria to rate good vs. not good? I'm lazy, so I like to make a basic buttercream frosting. I don't bake big batches, and I don't like tons of frosting so my recipe is rather small:

This is enough to nicely frost 4 cupcakes:

55 g unsalted Floralp butter, room temperature
1 tsp (5 ml) pure vanilla extract
125 g powdered sugar, sifted twice to make it nice and airy
1 Tbsp (15 ml) halbrahm or milk

1. Using a hand mixer, cream the room temperature butter until smooth and fluffy. It creams better if you cube it first.
2. Gradually beat in powdered sugar a little at a time, until fully incorporated.
3. Beat in vanilla extract.
4. Add halbrahm and beat for an additional 3-4 minutes.

If you want color, add food coloring at this point and beat for thirty seconds or so, until the color you want is uniform.

If you want a firmer frosting, use less cream or none at all. If you want a flavor other than vanilla, substitute in your favorite for the vanilla extract. I sometimes like to do a lemon frosting, so I use lemon juice instead of vanilla.

This frosting is not like one the plasticky ones you see in a cupcake shop, so it doesn't stand up well to travel or sitting a long time. it's fairly soft especially when room temp. I generally put it in the fridge to firm up, and frost just before serving.
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Old 24.01.2016, 22:24
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Re: Swiss butter for cake frosting

Any tips on how not to get the kitchen counter and yourself covered in white sugary dust?
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