Perfect Buttercream

I’m not much of a buttercream kind of person. They’re always too sweet. I’ve tried several and have been equally disappointed every time. Then I found this new recipe. Guess what’s different…nothing. Still all the same ingredients, but used in a different way. This knowledge has changed my life!! Ha. Well maybe not my life…but it’s changed my cupcake life:) So follow these simple rules to the greatest buttercream your lips have ever tasted!!

Before you start, here’s some tips for the fluffiest, richest buttercream:

* REALLY whip the butter. Whip it with your whisk attachment and whip it till it’s white. Pay super close attention to the color. Butter is yellow to start, but by the time you’re done whipping, it should be white or very, very pale.

* Use heavy cream. Cream makes it creamier and whip up fluffier.

* Use salted butter. People might say I’m crazy, but salted butter cuts the sweetness of the frosting. No one wants a frosting that hurts their teeth it’s so sweet. Don’t EVER EVER EVER use margarine in your frostings!! Make sure it’s REAL butter!!

* Don't overdue it with the vanilla, add no more than 1 1/2 tsp. If anything reduce the amount. The beauty of the flavors of the buttercream comes from the butter. By whipping the butter so long, it makes it basically taste like ice cream. This is the flavor you want to shine through, not the vanilla.

* Take the time to whip it more once you’ve added the cream. Whip it for at least as long as directed. This is what makes it so decadent and fluffy…almost like the consistency of a whipped cream.

1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter, at room temperature
4 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3 T heavy cream
1 1/2 t vanilla extract

In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, using the whisk attachment whip butter on high speed until nearly white and very fluffy, about 7 - 8 minutes, frequently scrapping down the sides of the bowl. Add in powdered sugar, heavy cream and vanilla extract and mix on low speed until blended, then increase speed to medium and beat until very light and fluffy, about 5 - 6 minutes, frequently scraping down the sides of the bowl. Immediately spread over cooled cake or cupcakes.

**If you want an alternate flavor of frosting, coconut or almond extract would be a great substitute for the vanilla extract, just add it to taste.
* From Cooking Classy