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Start a pot of water for your double boiler by placing about one inch of water in a saucepan. Bring water to a simmer (lightly bubbling). Combine Egg Whites and Sugar in a metal bowl. Place metal bowl with egg white on top of your double boiler pot with simmering water. Stir egg white mixture frequently, every minute. NOTE: Be careful while stirring, the egg white bowl can easily shift atop the double and spill; Also, the steam escaping bowl can be very hot. Cook egg white mixture until mixture reaches 160F. At this point all the granulation of the sugar should be dissolved into the warm eggs.
Once egg whites reach temperature, pout the egg mixture into the bowl of a standard Kitchen Aid mixer. Place bowl on mixer with whip attached. Start mixing on medium speed for 10-15 seconds then bring mixer to highest speed available. Stop a scrape every 2-3 minutes. This step may take 5-10 minutes. Mix until egg white mixture forms a thick meringue and side of bowl feels near room temperature.
Once meringue is formed, start adding small 1-2 Tablespoon sized portions of butter then shortening. Pause as needed so the butter and shortening can incorporate into the meringue. Scrape bowl and mix until near firm.
Add pinch of salt and vanilla. Mix, then scrape, then mix some more. Continue to mix until firm buttercream is formed.
For best results, let buttercream set up at room temperature for 2-3 hours (or overnight) before using.
Leftover buttercream can be stored in the refrigerator for one week.
Combine Butter and Shortening in the bowl standard Kitchen Aid Mixer.
Using paddle attachment cream butter and shortening until smooth. Start using medium speed, scrape, then use high speed. Scrape again and cream until smooth (no lumps if possible)
Turn mixer to its lowest speed and very slowly add powdered sugar. Pausing after each addition until sugar is absorbed into butter mix. Scrape as necessary.
Just before final addition of powdered sugar, add vanilla and remaining powdered sugar. Continue to mix
Scrape again, mix on medium speed now until all ingredients are incorporated. Scrape again if necessary and finish by beating buttercream on high until thick and fluffy.
This recipe is scaled for a standard 4.5 quart tabletop mixer
With this recipe, you will make the meringue part first, the buttercream portion next, and then finally combine the meringue and buttercream together, for the finished French Meringue Buttercream. A motorized mixer will be used in this recipe so please be careful and follow all safety precautions recommended by the manufacturer.
Complete Ingredient List: