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Okay, so I had to throw out 3 batches of my IMB. I got the meringue portion of it perfect. I've made it before, but as soon as I place the butter it gets soupy! I wait until the meringue mix in cooled down. I even place a bowl of ice water to cool it. My butter is at room temperature. Some people I read, use the flat mixer attachment when mixing the butter in. Can that make a difference?

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Sounds like your butter was too soft when you added it to the meringue. Before I start I cut up my butter and put it back in the fridge. Then take it out when I'm about to add it to the meringue. If it gets too soupy you don't have to throw it away. Just put the whole thing including the beater in the fridge for a few minutes. Then re-beat it. It should come together. I've done this many times with no problem.
Darn! U mean I threw away perfectly good icing? Okay, so leave the butter cold and use flat beater to slowly mix butter and meringue? If it gets too soupy just place in the fridge until it hardens and then mix with flat beater?

Kathy Kmonk said:
Sounds like your butter was too soft when you added it to the meringue. Before I start I cut up my butter and put it back in the fridge. Then take it out when I'm about to add it to the meringue. If it gets too soupy you don't have to throw it away. Just put the whole thing including the beater in the fridge for a few minutes. Then re-beat it. It should come together. I've done this many times with no problem.
You don't want the mixture to harden in the fridge...you just want it to set up some so that it comes together again. Good luck.
Well Wendy you didnt have to throw it out..yes put it in the fridge to chill but not too hard...the other thing is that I leave my butter out overnight to get nice and soft... the thing that really makes it soupy is adding too little and beating too much in between dollops of butter.... I add at least a half stick (1/4 cup) at a time and whip only 10-15 seconds in between additions...then when I get all the butter in I whip on high speed. If the butter is too cold when you add it you will get lumps and will have to whip too long...the meringue will heat up from the whipping and make it soupy again.....
Failure #3 and I quit! So this time I left the butter cold and yes, just as you said (wish I had read your commnet before) it got lumps and had to whip longer and got soupy again. I left in the fridge and re-whipped but not spreadable. Yesterday was a bad cake day. Even my cakes were ruined. :(
I have to make a new batch for a sheet cake due Monday at work. I wanted to relax today.

Karen Marie said:
Well Wendy you didnt have to throw it out..yes put it in the fridge to chill but not too hard...the other thing is that I leave my butter out overnight to get nice and soft... the thing that really makes it soupy is adding too little and beating too much in between dollops of butter.... I add at least a half stick (1/4 cup) at a time and whip only 10-15 seconds in between additions...then when I get all the butter in I whip on high speed. If the butter is too cold when you add it you will get lumps and will have to whip too long...the meringue will heat up from the whipping and make it soupy again.....
Dont give up Wendy...real buttercream takes a bit of patience but when you finally get it...it is so amazingly wonderful especially after you flavor it....just please make sure that the meringue is room temperature...remember butter melts at about 88 degrees....when the meringue is whipped but still hot you can turn the mixer on medium to keep it whipped but it will cool faster then if you just let it sit....you can try placing a cold water bath under your mixing bowl....test the temp of the meringue with yiur finger right down into the middle....if you feel any heat it is too warm.....patience....remember the sugar was 240 degrees so it takes time to cool....then add the butter in very large chunks and mix for only 10-15 seconds between additions then whip the heck out of it...at first it will look like it is breaking but about 30 seconds later it will turn into light and fluffly almosy like magic!
Wendy the other type you should try is Swiss buttercream..just as stable but you dont use a sugar syrup..tastes just the same...what you do is cook the whites and sugar over a waterbath until it reached 155 degrees...to make sure you kill th bacteria...then whip just like the Italian meringue...takes a lot less time and add the butter just like Italian meringue...here is the recipe..I use this all the time....

Swiss Buttercream
6 egg whites
12 oz granulated sugar (about 2 cups)
8-12 oz unsalted butter very soft but not melted (leave out a few hours or overnight)
1 Tbsp Vanilla extract or flavor of choice
Combine egg whites and sugar in a double boiler with the water gently simmering. Do not use anymore than med low heat. Whisk until the sugar is completely dissolved and if you have a candy thermometer; bring the whites/sugar to about 155 degrees. Remove from heat and pour into the work bowl of your mixer. Whip until very light and cool to room temperature. At this stage it is hard to over whip. This may take about 10 minutes. Add butter 2 oz at a time (half a stick) and whip for about 10 seconds then add butter in 2 oz intervals until it is all added. Whip on high until the buttercream comes together and is light and fluffy. There will be a time that you might think it is too soft but keep on whipping. Do not add the butter until it is room temperature or you will have soup…don’t rush this stage. If that happens put the buttercream in the refrigerator and cool it down, and then whip…it just might come back
NOTES:
Start with the smaller amount of butter and if you prefer it richer add the remaining. You can always refrigerate the leftover butter.
To make chocolate add ¼ cup cocoa…any kind. To make it extra special add about 4 oz melted and cooled dark chocolate.
Any flavor extract can be added Fruit purees or juice or liqueurs or rum and brandy also. Instant coffee can be added just mix with a little warm water first then cool. Try not to add more than about ¼ cup of additional liquid.
I've been told to add the butter cold and also room temperature soft. I've tried both ways and still get soup. But everyone positive comments make me want to try again. I loved the taste, just not the consisteny of my prior failures. I remember someone telling me " they are never failures, just ways of learning no to do them the same." Well, I've tried different ways to no wonderful looking and tasting IMBC....maybe one more try, but not today. I don't have enough eggs! LOL
Windy, I'm sorry you're having such a hard time. This is the video I watched that gave me the confidence to go ahead and try making IMBC. http://www.cakeswebake.com/video/italian-meringue-buttercream It really helped me. Keep trying, you won't regret it. Good luck.
Then you are adding the butter too soon..the meringue is too warm and you are beating the butter in between additions too much...I spent 2 months in school learning how and how not to do this icing.....I have made every mistake possible lol! Now mine comes out right every time. The butter will make it look soupy at first....for about 30 seconds.... then it will come together just after that...maybe you arent letting it whip past that "ugh" stage....

Windy Jimenez said:
I've been told to add the butter cold and also room temperature soft. I've tried both ways and still get soup. But everyone positive comments make me want to try again. I loved the taste, just not the consisteny of my prior failures. I remember someone telling me " they are never failures, just ways of learning no to do them the same." Well, I've tried different ways to no wonderful looking and tasting IMBC....maybe one more try, but not today. I don't have enough eggs! LOL
Should I use the flat beater or the whip after I add the butter? I may have over whipped once I've added the butter. I thought it had to be mixed together so I kept mixing away!

Karen Marie said:
Then you are adding the butter too soon..the meringue is too warm and you are beating the butter in between additions too much...I spent 2 months in school learning how and how not to do this icing.....I have made every mistake possible lol! Now mine comes out right every time. The butter will make it look soupy at first....for about 30 seconds.... then it will come together just after that...maybe you arent letting it whip past that "ugh" stage....

Windy Jimenez said:
I've been told to add the butter cold and also room temperature soft. I've tried both ways and still get soup. But everyone positive comments make me want to try again. I loved the taste, just not the consisteny of my prior failures. I remember someone telling me " they are never failures, just ways of learning no to do them the same." Well, I've tried different ways to no wonderful looking and tasting IMBC....maybe one more try, but not today. I don't have enough eggs! LOL
Darn, I can't see videos the at work (blocked or something) and hubby just dropped of his laptop to be dubugged!

Kathy Kmonk said:
Windy, I'm sorry you're having such a hard time. This is the video I watched that gave me the confidence to go ahead and try making IMBC. http://www.cakeswebake.com/video/italian-meringue-buttercream It really helped me. Keep trying, you won't regret it. Good luck.

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