I first made swiss meringue buttercream when we were living in Florida, sometime in 2008. I don’t even remember how I first heard about this type of buttercream, but we’ve had a love affair ever since I first tried it. Swiss meringue buttercream is a luscious and silky-smooth type of frosting made by cooking egg whites and beating into a meringue before adding butter. I’ve tried several recipes for it, and I always come back to this one because it is absolutely phenomenal and yields perfect results every single time.
This frosting is less sweet than typical buttercream, and it has a rich flavor that can’t be achieved with standard buttercream recipes. It spreads and pipes magnificently, and you’ll believe it with every gorgeous frosting swirl you create. This recipe lends itself well to all sorts of variations, making it suitable for just about any cake or cupcake you can dream up. If you want an utterly delicious, no-fail recipe for swiss meringue buttercream, this is it.
Making swiss meringue buttercream for the first time can be intimidating, so here are some of my tips to help you along the way:
• Clean your mixing bowl and utensils with a towel moistened with lemon juice to remove any grease that might prevent the meringue from forming.
• Don’t be afraid to test the egg and sugar mixture between two fingers. If it’s still gritty when you rub your fingers together, continue cooking until the mixture is smooth.
• Make sure to whip your meringue until glossy, stiff peaks form before adding the butter.
• If the frosting seems runny after adding your butter, simply refrigerate it for 5-10 minutes before whipping again.
• If the frosting looks curdled, do not fear! Keep beating until it comes together (and it will come together).
• If you need to refrigerate the frosting, reconstitute it by heating about a third of it in the microwave until it is just warm to the touch. Beat the remaining frosting in a mixing bowl on medium speed and gradually add the warmed frosting. Beat until creamy.