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Chocolate Mocha Buttercream

01/27/2010

DSC_0129 Don’t let the word mocha in the name of this frosting turn you off. Normally I shy away from things that are mocha. I drink my coffee every day, but usually want my chocolate left alone. After trying this recipe, I am a changed woman!! Changed, I tell ya *raising hands in the air* In a word, this frosting is AMAZING! This frosting is the perfect combination of creamy and chocolaty goodness!

I was digging around one day and just happened across this recipe. The blog claimed that this was the best buttercream frosting ever! Oh how right she was!! I have never made a frosting that tasted as good as this one. The consistency was like that of a mousse. It was smooth and chocolaty and just the best thing evah! It was so good that I wanted to eat a bowl of it. I would have too if hubs had not taken the piping bag away from me. Just because I was eating it straight from the bag…what? Of course, I was done frosting my cakes when I was helping myself to the bag-o-frosting.

DSC_0128 I made this frosting to go along with my TWD coco-buttermilk cupcakes. The recipe suggested for the cake was said by some to have a gritty taste. Not wanting my frosting to taste like sand, I went searching for another one. I found another blogger that had used this recipe with her cake. It sounded good so I thought that I would give it a go and try something new. I will say that it took me quite awhile to whip this up. Since I have only been seriously baking for a few months now, I have stuck to the more traditional buttercreams. You know, the ones with butter and/or Crisco and powdered sugar. All you really have to do with those frostings is cream the butter and add the sifted sugar. Well, not for this recipe. This one didn’t even have powdered sugar. I was so excited to be expanding my buttercream horizons!

Another exciting thing about this recipe was that I got to break out my candy thermometer. I registered for one when we got married, but had not had a chance to use it yet. It was fun to watch the sugar and water turn candy-like in the pan. You add the cooked sugar to the whipped eggs until the whole mix is cool and then add the butter. If you don’t want chocolate, just leave it like that. If you do want the chocolate frosting, then you add in the melted chocolate and espresso powder. It is simple to make, it just takes a long time to get it finished. Give it the time. I promise you will love it! Enjoy!!

Recipe adapted from www.zoebakes.com (she has great step-by-step pics too!)

Mocha Buttercream from The Essential Baker by Carol Bloom

Makes enough to cover and fill a 9-inch cake ( I used it on 36 cupcakes and had frosting left over)

2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature ( I used Large eggs)

2 extra-large egg yolks, at room temperature

1/4 cup granulated sugar

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1 1/4 cups granulated sugar

1/2 cup water

1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

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1 pound (2 cups, 4 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

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6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, very finely chopped, melted over a double boiler and cooled to room temperature ( I did not chop mine and I did not use a double boiler. I broke the squares in the bowl and melted it in the microwave. )

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2 teaspoons instant espresso powder ( I used a Café Vienna flavor of that General Foods coffee mix. If you want a heavier mocha flavor, use more powder.)

1 tablespoon water

Instructions

In a small sauce pan fitted with a Candy Thermometer, bring the 1 1/4 cups sugar, water and cream of tartar to a boil over medium-high heat. If any of the sugar crystals get onto the side of the pan, be sure to wipe them down with a wet clean pastry brush. The sugar needs to cook until it hits 242° F on the thermometer. This takes several minutes.

While that is boiling, place the eggs, egg yolks and sugar in the bowl of your stand mixer and whip on medium speed until they are thick, pale in color and hold a ribbon when the beater is lifted. (this took a long time for me—I finally whipped it up to high)

Once the sugar syrup has reached its temperature of 242° F, slowly pour it into the bowl of whipped egg yolks while the beater is going on slow. Be sure to pour it along the bowl so that the hot syrup doesn’t hit the beater and splatter! (make sure you don’t pour it down the side of the bowl…if you do, it will stick to the bowl and not make it into the frosting)

Allow the eggs and sugar mixture to beat on medium high speed until the eggs have cooled, about 8 minutes.

Add the butter 2 tablespoons at a time. The buttercream will go through a stage that looks soupy and curdled, but continue to add all of the butter and it will come together. The finished buttercream will be smooth and silky. Add a tablespoon of water to the espresso powder and dissolve. Add the melted and cooled chocolate to the buttercream. Mix to combine and decorate your cake.

Meg

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