Hello! Welcome to my post about how to buttercream a cake. I made this cake a couple of weeks ago for a special occasion which was so much fun- skip to the end for the finished cake look! Disclaimer- I am not a professional at this, this is my ‘normal person at home’ style buttercreaming…
This post isn’t about a fancy outer layer butter cream, it’s about an underneath butter cream layer that you can either ice on top of or put a final butter cream layer on top of. This is some hints and tips about how to do this buttercream layer! If you’re looking for info on how to ice an occasion cake in a traditional style then read my post about that here. Let’s hop right in…
Make your cakes
Step one of how to buttercream a cake – make your cakes! I am using my Lemoncello Cake Recipe (definitely check it out if you haven’t already they’re sublime!) and I have also fed the cakes once with lemoncello, I made 4 for 4 layers.
Chill your cakes
Step two of how to buttercream a cake- chill. You can either cut your cakes to size once the cakes have cooled or you can wait until they’re chilled. It’s easier to wait until they’re chilled really. Wrap your cakes in cling film and refrigerate them overnight.
Size your cakes
Step three of how to buttercream a cake – size your cakes. Once your cakes are nice and cool they will be easy to cut and easier to ice. Cut the tops off to make flat surfaces.
Make your buttercream
Step four of how to buttercream a cake – make the buttercream! It’s difficult to give a recipe for buttercream as the ingredients are a bit of an unknown on mixing day depending on the heat etc… What I can tell you is that I used about 1 250g pat of butter to nearly a whole large bag of icing sugar. Get your butter to room temperature and beat with a mixer. Gradually add icing sugar and beat until you have a soft, smooth but not runny mixture. The smoother the mixture the easier it is to spread. I would recommend beating it a lot to get a nice smooth texture. Some people add milk but I didn’t this time.
Start upside down
Step five of how to buttercream a cake, prepare your surface. Once you have your butter cream made, put some cling film on a board and put a big dollop on the cling film. This is going to be the top of the cake.
Layer up and fill
Step six of how to buttercream a cake- add up your layers putting in the buttercream. Put the bottom of the cake on the bottom. When we flip the cake later this will be the top and will be the flattest surface.
The Crumb layer
Step seven of how to buttercream a cake-the crumb later. Start to liberally apply the buttercream to the outside. Don’t worry if you get some crumb in there- it doesn’t matter, we are going to do two layers and this is called the crumb layer so it doesn’t matter if some crumbs get in!
Chill – again
Step eight of how to buttercream a cake- now you have your crumb layer – or rough and ready layer- set that in the fridge to chill for at least 3 hours. You can see it’s not perfect and the next layer will make a much smoother finish.
Prep your final surface
Step nine of how to buttercream a cake- get your final surface ready. This is what the final cake is going to sit on and prep it with another dollop of icing to make it stick to the surface like before.
Flip your cake
Step ten of how to buttercream a cake- flip your refrigerated cake on to the final surface- go carefully!! Then mount on a turntable which will make it easier to get a clean surface on this second layer.
The second layer
Step eleven of how to buttercream a cake- make more butter cream and get a good smooth final layer. Use a long spatula or cake scraper which is like a piece of plastic. Dollop on the icing and smooth by turning the table and holding your hand steady. This is it- it isn’t perfect but it’s a pretty good and smooth under layer!
Step twelve and the final step of how to buttercream a cake- decorate! As I said this post is about the under layer. You can then put another layer on top of buttercream if you like or you can use royal icing like I did. I have to admit that this was a slight disaster as the weather was so hot- this cake looked amazing when I left home straight out of the fridge but after an hour in the heat it somewhat slipped- my bf said it looked like a sad snowman… He wasn’t wrong! But with a bit of a tidy up and the beautiful flowers and topper I think it was a good save!
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