• My Signature Italian Buttercream

    Italian Buttercream is like a small miracle.  It is a miracle in both taste and construction. There is no better moment when making it than when it "comes together".  It goes through so many different stages, all of which make you believe that no good can come of it.  That you will have to throw it out and start again. That this time it will fail for sure.  But then, as if a miracle, it suddenly changes consistency and becomes beautiful, flavourful, buttercream.

    Here is my recipe and how to make it...And along with the ingredients you need to have faith..lol


    8 egg whites (1 cup)

    500 grams white sugar

    3/4 cup water

    1 1/2 pounds unsalted butter

    1 1/2 pounds salted butter

    2 tablespoon clear vanilla



    Combine sugar and water in a small saucepan and boil rapidly until it reaches 240 degrees. Meanwhile whip egg whites on high until they have nice stiff peaks.

    Once sugar syrup is at 248 degrees slowly and carefully pour into the whipped egg whites in one slow steady stream. Try not to let it hit the beaters as it will spray crystals of sugar onto the edges of the bowl and make piping difficult if it gets in your piping bag.

    Whip the egg whites and the sugar syrup until the bowl is cool to the touch.  About 20 to 30 minutes.

    Gradually add all of the butter. I add about a tablespoon at a time so it takes a bit of time.  Now this is where the miracle comes in.  The egg whites will lose their volume as you add the sugar and may go through lots of different consistencies. They can go back to a liquid, followed by what looks like cottage cheese and then finally a beautiful frosting.  This also can take some time but here is where you need to have faith.  If you have used the right amounts as outlined in the recipe, this will work.  I promise you!

    When it is at the frosting stage add your vanilla or flavour of your choice. 





  • Ghostly Sights!


    So anyone around me these last few weeks know I have been obsessed with Meringue.  I was inspired by a recent Instagram picture that showed the new “Sultan Tip” ring and wanted to be able to make them.  But try as I may I could not get them to work.

    They are supposed to have a nice clean hole in the centre and look much like a Christmas wreath in shape.

    I tried many different recipes; some had cream of tartar, some grind their sugar, some added lemon juice...but no deal...couldn’t do it...

    And then the moment passed.   I figured it was likely due to the fact I did not have a “Silpat” as shown in the demo video so decided to attack it again once I was in possession of one of those.

    But this morning I wanted to make my Ghostly Meringues.  I then realized I did not have any liquid egg whites (which I swear by because you can only use so many egg yolks) so I had to resort to using real eggs. 

    Well what a shock!!!

    Real egg whites whip up way differently!  They were so stiff and glossy and beautiful...It made me want to dance with joy!  I could hold the entire bowl upside down and they stayed put!

    So now I have to try the Sultan tips again!

    But meanwhile, it was time to make the Ghosts.   They piped like a dream so I thought I would give you the recipe given I tried so many...this one is the best and is the basic.




    4 Large temperature egg whites

    ½ teaspoon cream tartar

    1 cup granulated sugar

    ½ teaspoon flavouring (vanilla, almond...I prefer almond)


    Set oven to 170 degrees.

    Whip the egg whites until foamy and then add the cream of tartar and whip for another minute or so to ensure it is well incorporated.

    Gradually add all of the sugar one tablespoon at a time.  Make sure each addition is added slowly. It is a labour of love but worth taking your time to get a great finished product.

    Finally add your flavouring a mix just a moment longer.

    Put your meringue into a piping bag and pipe away.  For my ghosts I used a large round tip (number 5) but I wished it was a bit bigger and I piped my ghosts.  Finally I added my eyeballs.  Adding eyeballs always makes me laugh.  I feel like I am creating a family and then I don’t want to eat them.  Helps with my weight ...lol...

    You need to cook these until crisp and it is hard to tell you how long that will be because it depends how big they are.  But probably at least an hour...maybe 2!  Then turn the oven off, prop open the door just a little and leave them in the oven.  I left mine over night.  Store in an airtight contain and they last a long, long time!  

    A word of caution:  if you leave them in the oven overnight...don’t forget them!  I have done this before and trust me....it is disappointing to open your oven door to pop in your chicken after preheating  your oven only to find your pretty meringues cooked to oblivion.  

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