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Trouble with stabilizing whipped cream

trolley Sep 10, 2012 08:21 AM

i've tried making stabilized whipped cream on 3 occasions with mostly failures. the last attempt was somewhat successful but it was just dumb luck. luckily none of these cakes were very big (cupcakes) and they weren't for a bunch of people.

the first time i made it with dissolved gelatin and all i ended up with was whipped cream with strings of gelatin.

the second attempt was a cornstarch whipped cream and each time it curdled. i would whip not very long and the moment i thought it was coming together i was left with a curdled mess. the last attempt i stopped whipping right before i thought i was coming together and it worked but i felt like it was slightly grainy.

now i'm making a sheet cake for my son's birthday and he wants whipped cream frosting. i would just make regular whipped cream but the cake has to be transported.

does anyone have any tips for making successful stabilized whipped cream?

  1. hotoynoodle Sep 10, 2012 08:37 AM

    corn starch in whipped cream sounds just awful and it sounds like you didn't melt/dissolve the gelatin sufficiently.

    but why not something simple like this?

    http://allrecipes.com/recipe/sturdy-w...

    1 Reply
    1. re: hotoynoodle
      trolley Sep 10, 2012 09:05 AM

      the gelatin was dissolved sufficiently. cornstarch whipped cream is one of the stabilized whipped cream in Rose Beranbaum's Cake Bible.

    2. j
      jsaimd Sep 10, 2012 08:41 AM

      I usually use gelatin if I am not feeding vegetarians. I bloom, then fully disolve by zapping it in the microwave for 5 seconds, allow it to cool a bit. I partially whip the cream, then pour in the gelatin while whipping. Remember that the cream is cold, so if you you don't incorporate quickly you will get strings of gelatin.

      I use agar agar for vegetarians.

      Alternatively there are commercial products - like piping gel from Wilton or Dr. Oeker's (sp?) product.

      1. dave_c Sep 10, 2012 09:14 AM

        To be honest, I've used the packaged whipped cream stabilizers.
        Also, I've just used confectioner's sugar at a ratio of 5 tablespoons to 1 cup of heavy cream.

        Are you using a stand mixer? or beaters?
        Last few times, I've been using an immersion blender since it's easier to clean.

        3 Replies
        1. re: dave_c
          trolley Sep 10, 2012 09:37 AM

          hand beating only. i just got an immersion for my birthday! i'm so excited. maybe i'll use it. i'm thinking i'm going to have to get a packaged stabilizer. i don't want to waste a ton of whipped cream.

          1. re: trolley
            t
            travelerjjm Sep 10, 2012 10:15 AM

            1) I use a commercial stabalizer: WhipIt. I love it.
            2) be careful not to overbeat or you will get butter
            3) if you do this a lot, try one of those cans that uses the charger cartridge.

            1. re: travelerjjm
              trolley Sep 10, 2012 01:57 PM

              i'll just give in to this Whip it item you all seem to like. no need to drive myself insane here anymore.

        2. chefj Sep 10, 2012 06:13 PM

          I often use R.L.B. 's methods for stabilizing whipped cream with out a problem. I would read carefully and try again.

          3 Replies
          1. re: chefj
            h
            halochef Sep 11, 2012 05:36 PM

            try "gum"<---not the chew kind or buy a product called "better creme"

            1. re: halochef
              chefj Sep 11, 2012 05:36 PM

              I do not need to try anything new the methods I already use work great. But thanks anyway

              1. re: halochef
                KitchenBarbarian Sep 12, 2012 01:14 PM

                Do you mean guar gum, or xanthan gum, or something else?

                My local Whole Foods used to carry one or both of these but they've drastically reduced the size of their bulk spices area and they no longer carry either anymore.

            2. c
              caviar_and_chitlins Sep 11, 2012 05:40 PM

              Have you heard of QimiQ? It's only available to foodservice, but if you know someone.....

              1. chowser Sep 11, 2012 07:36 PM

                I don't like it stabilized with gelatin as much. My favorite way is to stabilize it w/ mascarpone cheese, along these lines:

                http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                5 Replies
                1. re: chowser
                  trolley Sep 12, 2012 02:09 PM

                  you chowser, i'm starting to think mascarpone is the way. i liked to suggestion above with cream cheese but i've had it before and find the cheese to be too strong. resulting in more of a cream cheese frosting rather than the full whipped cream flavor. i love cream cheese frosting but it's just not what i'm looking for in this cake.

                  1. re: trolley
                    chowser Sep 12, 2012 03:28 PM

                    I find the same with cream cheese and love mascarpone. If lemon fits your cake, this is probably one of my favorite frostings of all time:

                    http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                    1. re: chowser
                      trolley Sep 13, 2012 08:18 PM

                      i just read my response to you and i must have been huffing or something bc my grammar is terrible! "you chowser..." what is this? i sound like tarzan! you chowser, me trolley...well you get the point. i do love lemon but i'm making a take on a cake I had from this bakery. chocolate with bananas, whipped cream and italian buttercream. perfectly sweet but not too sweet. i love italian buttercream but can't make it due to my son's egg allergies. so i need to make it a whipped cream version.

                      1. re: trolley
                        chowser Sep 14, 2012 02:30 PM

                        LOL, I assumed it was an autocorrect thing (I blame all my errors on that now...). Lemon curd mascarpone would be awful on that cake! But, I think regular mascarpone would be great. I might give that one a try.

                        1. re: trolley
                          souschef Sep 28, 2012 08:38 AM

                          Heh heh! Thanks for the chuckle. Loved the post.

                          I remember stabilizing whipping cream by melting white chocolate with a small quantity of whipping cream, but can't remember the exact process. I think it was a RLB method.

                  2. i
                    Isolda Sep 14, 2012 10:04 AM

                    Oddly enough, I don't dissolve the gelatine powder and it works just fine. I sprinkle it over the unwhipped cream and vanilla extract in the bowl of my stand mixer, stir a little, then let it sit in the fridge for maybe 5-10 minutes just to soften it. When I take it out of the fridge, I add the sugar and whip it.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Isolda
                      n
                      neensters Oct 14, 2012 08:33 AM

                      I was curious so I tried Isolda's technique of not dissolving the gelatine. Whipped it to stiff peaks and left it in the refrigerator overnight. When I checked on it the next day, liquid had collected at the bottom of the container and the consistency of the whipped cream was noticeably softer, indicating to me that the cream was not properly stabilized. So unfortunately, this technique did not work for me. :(

                      I will be sticking to my tried and true recipe for whipped cream frosting. It's delicious and not too sweet. It's from a recipe for Diner-Style Strawberry Shortcake:

                      http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/wa...

                      FYI, if you follow this recipe, I have found that you can rewhip the cream after all the gelatin is added, in case the consistency is not as firm as you would like. :)

                    2. KitchenBarbarian Sep 14, 2012 11:06 AM

                      I like Isolda's solution, but I'm surprised no one has mentioned the marshmallow trick.

                      For each cup of whipping cream used, set aside one large marshmellow.

                      When the whipped cream is at the soft peak stage, melt the marshmallow in a glass bowl in the microwave. Zap it for just a few seconds - you may need to experiment to see how to do this in your microwave because microwaves vary so widely in power. There's a huge difference between the time needed in a 700W microwave and a 1250W.

                      It'll start to puff up - stir it as it softens, til it's soft enough to scrape out of the bowl in a soft gloppy pool. Add it to the whipped cream and beat again until you get stiff peaks.

                      Also, one way to get cornstarch into your whipped cream without making a mess is to substitute BY WEIGHT powdered sugar for the sugar called for in your recipe. In the USA, they add cornstarch to powdered sugar to keep it from caking.

                      I've seen suggestions of adding up to a T of cornstarch per cup of whipping cream, but that seems a bit much to me. If just switching to powdered sugar doesn't help enough and you want to try the cornstarch method, I'd suggest sifting about a tsp per cup of whipping cream into your powdered sugar and trying that. If it's still not firm enough, another tsp. Any more than that (and I think 2 tsp per cup of cream might be pushing it too far already) and the texture of your whipped cream is changed in ways I don't find particularly desirable.

                      The idea of adding powdered milk to the whipped cream changes the flavor in ways I don't care for, so I don't recommend that one either.

                      1. Ruthie789 Sep 14, 2012 06:09 PM

                        Anna Olsen, the pastry chef on food network, recommends using dry milk powder in your whip cream which she advises stabilizies it.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: Ruthie789
                          m
                          millygirl Oct 14, 2012 01:47 PM

                          I saw that show too! I wonder if you can get dry milk powder at the bulk store? I'd only want a small amount to try it out.

                          1. re: millygirl
                            Ruthie789 Oct 14, 2012 04:07 PM

                            That's a good suggestion, I have never looked for it at a bulk store.

                        2. s
                          sgbigfive Sep 28, 2012 07:26 AM

                          I do make TiramiSu, and I have to make two layers of whipped cream,
                          after a couple of days it would fall, I started using about one ounce of Jell-o Instant Pudding and Pie Mix, for about 32 ounce of heavy cream
                          When the cream start to thicken start adding the pudding mix, You can use flavored mix, I usually use the vanilla, if the cake is lemon use the lemon flavor. and it is sweet so you do not have to add sugar.

                          1. dave_c Oct 15, 2012 12:13 PM

                            Trolley... Did you find a method that worked for you?

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: dave_c
                              trolley Oct 15, 2012 03:31 PM

                              NO dave_c! it all worked out in the end but this is what happened. so i went with mixing the mascarpone in the whipped cream. it tasted fantastic but didn't really make the whipped cream piping consistency. so i panicked and did the gelatin method and got lumpy whipped cream, AGAIN! i should have gotten commercial stabilizer but i slept on it. nothing really yielded what i was looking for. the cake worked out but not what i anticipated. on my wedding cake it was frosted with stabilized whipped cream. it was perfect. oh, there's always the next cake...

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