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24.2.13

HONEY BUTTERCREAM



To be used to fill the Aunt Sassi Cake, or some other delicacy. My grandma had a layered honey cake, which she was very proud of and I have yet to make it for posterity. As you see I am not overly fond of honey flavoured baked goods. But I forgot there was honey in this delicate buttercream. It’s unbelievably beautiful. Not for the faint of heart to make, but I have some pointers that will make it easier. I did not think 1/3 cup of flour was wholly sufficient, next time I will add 2 extra tablespoons. The recipe has been altered to reflect this. There is a suggestion to chill the honey buttercream if it starts to melt. By all means refrigerate it, but do not think you can put it in the freezer and then beat it back into the velvety cream it used to be. It will remain grainy, as the final layer of my icing job attests to it.
 
The most important advice is let the cooked component cool down to room temperature before adding the butter. If you don’t do that, you will have ample trouble with the cream. What is chopped up soft but cool butter as the recipe suggested? You take the butter out of the fridge, cut it into small squares and place them on a plate. By the time the cooked part of the cream is at room temperature the butter will be just right. If you follow the recipe it ought to work. I made all sorts of mistakes, but in the end it worked out. Next time this should be hassle free provided I follow my own suggestions.
 
1-1/2 cups sugar
1/3 cup + 2 Tbsp flour
1-1/2 cups whole milk
1/3 cup heavy cream
1-1/2 cups unsalted cold butter, cut into small pieces
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
3 Tbsp honey
 
• Take the butter out of the fridge, cut it into small squares and place them on a plate and set aside.
• In a medium heavy bottomed saucepan, whisk the flour and sugar together.
• Add the milk and cream and cook over medium heat, whisking regularly.
• Cook until the mixture comes to a boil.
• Cook the mixture on medium high for 10-12 minutes or until thickened.
• Transfer the sugar cream mixture to a bowl and beat on high speed until it reaches room temperature.
• Pack lots of frozen vegetables around the bowl of a standing beater; this will speed up the cooling process. It supposed to be at room temperature after 10 minutes of beating. Not true. I had to beat it for 17 minutes.
• Turn the beater down to low and add the butter chunks a little bit at a time. It may look like the butter won't blend in and you'll be stuck with chunks of butter. Just keep mixing and it will smooth out.
• When the butter is all incorporated, increase the speed to medium high and beat until light and fluffy, for about 2 minutes.
• Add the honey and vanilla and just beat to combine. Do not overbeat. Overbeating will collapse this buttercream. This might seem like a contradiction, but should it collapse, chill thoroughly [do not under any circumstances place in the freezer to speed things up] and beat again until fluffy.



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I began to post recipes for my family and it turned out to be a work in progress. "zsuzsa is in the kitchen" has over 900 recipes of Hungarian and international recipes. My recipes are organized into a cookbook format. On top of the page click on the cookbook to get access to all my recipes. If I ever figure out how to add a printer friendly gadget I will add it. In the meantime feel free to cut and paste. Happy cooking!

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