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Mar 30, 2007 05:01 PM

Buttercream Frosting – Egg Question

I'm baking a cake for a friend who has requested white frosting (not cream cheese or marshmallow, just plain white frosting). I plan to use a buttercream recipe with simple syrup but after reading through recipes got confused. Is it better or what's the difference between a recipe that uses whole eggs vs. yolks only vs. egg whites only? If I use yolks will the frosting be yellow?

Thanks for your help.

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  1. Would you post the recipe? I don't ever remember seeing a buttercream that calls for eggs. Usually it's butter or shortening if you want pure white, powdered sugar, sometimes milk to thin or corn syrup for draping strings of frosting. Are you thinking of Royal Icing? Royal icing hardens whereas butter cream stays softer underneath the first layer. Try this site and do a search for recipes.

    1 Reply
    1. re: mrsmegawatt

      Here's the version I found on Food

      Classic Vanilla Buttercream
      Recipe courtesy Gale Gand

      2 cups sugar
      1/2 cup water
      4 egg whites
      1 pound butter, cut up
      1 to 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

      In a small clean dry saucepan, place 2 cups sugar and then pour 1/2 cup water down the sides of the pan. Make an X in the sugar with 1 finger to encourage the water to seep into the middle of the pan of sugar. Bring to a boil and cook until softball stage or 235 degrees F on a candy thermometer.

      Meanwhile, in a mixer with a whip attachment, whip the whites until they form soft peaks. When the syrup is up to temperature, drizzle it down the wall of the mixing bowl with the mixer running. Continue whipping until light, fluffy and almost cooled down. Start adding the butter a few cubes at a time to cool the frosting and thicken it. When it gets thick you can stop adding butter; you may not use the whole pound (it depends on how much water you cooked out of your syrup). Add vanilla extract to taste.

    2. Yes..using all yolks will turn it slightly off yellow. I suggest doing a google search for rose levy beranbaum's Mousseline buttercream. It's from the cake bible. It's the only buttercream I ever use. Please don't use any recipe with shortening or powdered sugar. It only makes the cake taste sweeter & leaves you feeling kinda gross.

      3 Replies
      1. re: sugarbuzz

        I have the Cake Bible so making that recipe is no problem. Thanks.

        1. re: sugarbuzz

          The frosting turned out perfectly. I used the recipe from the Cake Bible and replaced the liquer/brandy with additional simple syrup and a little bit of vanilla since she didn't want a lot of flavorings. It was the slightest bit ivory and looked beautiful. Decorating was another story -- we couldn't find all of our pastry essentials and had to use a plastic bag and tape the tip onto it. Lots of air kept gasping out. Here's a picture of my friend with the cake.

          1. re: Paladar

            I also like the Neoclassic Buttercream from the Cake Bible, because you don't have to worry about the temperature of the sugar syrup. Once it reaches a full boil, it's at the right temperature -- no candy thermometer needed.