devonly randomonium

Sugar-coated effery and shenanigans.

Me and Mr. Banana Legs Part Two: Meringue Madness

on March 21, 2011

Source: 2Kad Blog

Last week, I challenged myself to make the Mr. Banana Legs cake from the CakeLove cookbook. How did it go? Well the experience was not entirely bad. I think I was just super nervous about making a cake from scratch. I don’t know why because I’ve made a number of things from scratch before with no problems. But to me, cakes are more delicate than brownies, bars and cookies. It seems like one mistake could make them fall or ruin how moist they are. Who knows. Maybe I’m just paranoid from all of the years of watching my Mom fret over her pound cakes.

Making the cakes was a breeze. They baked up well and were super easy to split for the filling. The problem was the Italian Meringue Buttercream icing. The buttercream I make for my cookies is simple and takes a few minutes to make. The Italian Meringue Buttercream icing  is another story.  You basically have to make a meringue and then add hot sugar syrup to it. After that, you cream in four sticks of butter….one tablespoon at a time.

This icing has been my albatross. It’s irking me that I have yet to nail it. When I tried making it the first time, I made the mistake of not letting my butter sit out long enough before adding it to the meringue. It ended up being a lumpy, sugary mess.

I tried to freestyle during my second attempt because I was afraid the icing might be too sweet for the cake. So instead of using the four sticks of unsalted butter that the recipe calls for, I used two sticks of salted butter and two sticks of unsalted butter. The icing came out better and tasted like buttery rum heaven. So I built the layers, iced the cake and popped it in the fridge.

Later that evening, I pulled the cake out of the fridge to taste it. The banana cake was light, fluffy and delicious. The icing however was like a shield. And it no longer tasted like buttery rum heaven. Instead, it was like eating sugary butter.

So I’ve decided to take another crack at this cake. If this icing keeps giving me hell, I’ll just use my own buttercream recipe.  Stay tuned folks!

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