Crusting Buttercream Frosting (Viva Paper Towel Method)

Crusting Buttercream Frosting (Viva Paper Towel Method)

2 pounds sifted powdered sugar

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened

1 1/2 cups solid vegetable shortening (Crisco)

2 tablespoons clear vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

1/3 cup water (I used heavy cream)

Optional: 1 - 2 tablespoons meringue powder for humid climates

In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter, shortening, and extracts until smooth. Gradually add powdered sugar, meringue powder, and water (or cream). Mix thoroughly on low speed until smooth and creamy. Fill a decorator bag with frosting and use a #18 tip to spread rows of frosting up and down around the sides of a crumb-coated cake. Dip an off-set spatula in very hot water, dry, and spread the frosting smooth. Using the #18 tip, fill in the top of the cake with rows of frosting, then smooth with the hot spatula. Allow the cake to set for 15 minutes before covering frosting with the SMOOTH side of a Viva paper towel and gently smoothing with a fondant smoothing tool. Decorate cake as desired.