Recently for work, I threw together another vanilla cinnamon cake, but this time I altered the frosting recipe some. I used the standard Italian buttercream from the CIA’s baking book, at a half recipe and I still had a couple of cups of leftover frosting.
Mexican Hot Chocolate Buttercream
4 oz egg whites
8 oz sugar
2 oz water
1 lb butter (unsalted, and softened)
1.5 teaspoons vanilla extract
4.5 oz chocolate (mixed dark and white, to taste)
1 teaspoon ancho powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1.5 teaspoon cinnamon (as usual for this recipe, cassia is the way to go)
Melt 6 oz of the sugar with the water in a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium-high heat, until it reaches soft-ball stage (240 degrees). Meanwhile, beat egg whites until frothy, then add remaining sugar and continue beating to medium peaks. When syrup reaches the target temperature, slowly pour into the egg whites, with mixer on medium speed. When all the syrup has been added, beat meringue on high until it returns to room temperature. Add butter in small batches, letting each addition blend in before adding more. When buttercream is smooth, blend in the chocolate, spices and vanilla. Use now, or refridgerate for later use.
Also: The dry nature of the cake has always been a bit of a problem, so I think next time instead of 4 whole eggs, I’ll use 2 whole eggs, and 4 egg yolks. Hopefully leaving the whites out will keep the cake more moist, and the increased fat from the yolks will help with the same thing.