Sunday, January 27, 2013

How much buttercream do I need?

I LOVE Swiss-Meringue Buttercream!  If you've been a fan of my blog for any amount of time, you probably know that!  It's like heaven on a spoon...well...not really because Heaven will be a million times more amazing than Swiss-Meringue Buttercream...but, it's like heaven for my taste buds I guess! :)  It's light, creamy, buttery and just plain AH-mazing!!

I've been making cakes for a while now and for some reason, like I mentioned in my "How much ganache" post, I hardly keep records of what I use in my cakes.  I guess it might because I just don't make very many, so when I do make one, I'm just in the zone and don't take the time to write it all down.  So, today was the day to give me some clarity and hopefully help you all out too! - because I LOVE being able to give you all tips to make your lives easier too!  
I had some yummy vanilla SMBC in the freezer, so after thawing it out and re-whipping it, I used a whole bunch of various sized cake boards to mimic a cake layer so that I could spread that heavenly stuff out and weigh it to see just how much I actually use!!!

Now, I love lots of buttercream...so, you'll need to take that in consideration.  I used the Ateco tip #6 to pipe about a 1/2" thick slab of buttercream on my boards.  That's pretty standard for me.  I use 1" thick cakes (most of the time), so that gives me a beautiful 1:2 ratio of buttercream to cake!!  Some of it squishes out when things are settling, so these amounts below are generous.

Here's how the buttercream measured out...

Round Cakes:
6" Diameter: 5 oz
8" Diameter: 12 oz
10" Diameter: 20 oz

Square Cakes:
6":  7 oz
8":  15 oz
10": 23 oz

So, if you like a thinner layer of buttercream, you can adjust these amounts accordingly.

When I make a batch of Swiss-Meringue Buttercream (see recipe under this post .  Scroll down to "What buttercream do you use?"), I use a 1 to 2 to 2.5 ratio of egg whites to sugar to butter.  Then, add in my flavorings.  So, let's pretend I'm making a four layer 8" round cake.  Using my ounces above, I'll have three layers with 12oz of buttercream.  That's 36oz total.  Using my 1:2:3 ratio for ingredients, I would need 7oz of egg whites, 13oz of sugar and 16oz of butter.  That will give me my 36oz of buttercream!!  
Now, you can obviously make a bit more to make sure there's enough...but that helps me to know what I'll need and can save myself the added calories of having to eat up the left over buttercream!! :)  I would be comfortable using the ounce weights above almost exact because anything around 1/2" of buttercream is great!!  Now, remember, after making a batch of buttercream, weigh it out and divide it evenly into how many layers you'll need so that in case there is a bit less than you thought, all the layers will have an equal amount.  And, if you don't have a kitchen scale...invest in one! :)  I use mine ALL the time!!! :)
I hope that helps you all!  I know it's wonderful for me to have this down on paper now!!  Sorry I didn't do anything larger than 10"...I never make anything larger than 10".  But, you could probably use the proportions from 6" to 8" to 10" to figure out about how many more ounces you'll need for a say a 12"!

Also, one more fun thing to mention!!!  I just got back from filming my tutorials and they're going to be amazing!!!  I had SUCH a fun time!!  They should be out the end of February at the latest, so stay tuned for more updates as it gets closer!!!  YEAH! :)  Thanks for all your patience! - it'll be worth it! :)

God bless you all!!  Happy buttercreaming! :)
OH, and I'll have one more post on crumb coats and how many ounces you'll need for those!! :)  Stay tuned!

Photo above from: www.domestifluff.com


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

How much ganache do I need?

If you're like me, you get into a cake project and after you're done wish you would have written down what you used!!!  I have done this SO many times!  It's as simple as a piece of paper and a pencil, but I just get so focused that I don't think about taking notes while I'm working.

So, while I had some fresh ganache made, I decided to take some notes!!  Have you ever wanted to know "How much ganache do I need to fill an 8" cake?"  Well, I've got some answers for you! :)

Now, before I give you my weights, I have to say that I like a NICE generous amount of filling in my cake.  I usually try and do 1/2 ratio to cake.  So, if my cake layer is 1" thick, then my frosting will be close to 1/2" thick.  For ganache filling, you might use a bit less because it's so dense!  For the ganache I made the filling about 1/3" thick.  Filling is one of the best parts of a cake! :)

Here's what I discovered worked for me!  Again, this is dark chocolate ganache (a ratio of 2 parts dark chocolate to 1 part heavy cream).  For the recipes, how-tos and tips, click here and scroll down to ganache.

Square:
For a 10" square cake: 14 oz ganache per layer
For a 8" square cake: 11 oz ganache per layer
For a 6" square cake: 8 oz ganache per layer

Round:
For a 8" round cake: 7 oz ganache per layer
For a 6" round cake: 4 oz of ganache per layer

So, if you know you're going to make an 8" round cake and you're going to have 3 layers of ganache in there, then you'll need 21 oz. of ganache.  Using the ratios of 2:1 to make the ganache, you know that you can use 14oz of dark chocolate and 7 oz of heavy cream to get your 21 oz!!  That's how much you'll have to make! :)  Just weigh everything out so you know each layer gets the same amount and you'll be set!  Now, to be safe, I'd round up and make 16oz of dark chocolate and 8 oz of heavy cream.  That way you'll have some extra for a midnight snack!! :) YUM! - or truffles!

I'll have to do this for buttercream too!  So, stay tuned!

Have a great week!!  Blessings!