Old Fashioned Boiled Milk Coffee Frosting

The standard confectioners’ sugar and butter frostings are OK, albeit a little too sweet. But when we came across a recipe that defied everything we thought we knew about frosting, we were skeptical. After we tasted it, though, we realized that we may never go back to the old standby. Here’s what we discovered: Test Kitchen Discoveries ** Heating and stirring flour and milk into a thick paste, beating together sticks of butter and granulated sugar, adding the paste, and continuing to beat may have been unconventional, but it produced a fluffy, flavorful icing. ** To firm up the icing and make it more spreadable, we adjusted the ratio of milk to flour and substituted cornstarch for some of the flour. ** The original recipe left little lumps of flour suspended in the icing. Adding sugar before heating the flour and milk mixture helped solve this problem. Straining the mixture before cooking it eliminated any residual lumps. ** Adding the butter to the paste 1 tablespoon at a time prevented the icing from resembling overbeaten whipped cream. STEP BY STEP How to Make Miracle Frosting ** American buttercreams are made by beating together butter and confectioners' sugar (and sometimes milk or cream). Miracle frosting is a whole other ball game. ** Combine the milk with sugar, flour, cornstarch, and salt. Pour through a strainer to help eliminate lumps. ** Cook the strained milk mixture over medium heat until it's so thick it's difficult to whisk, about 6 minutes. ** Cool the flour paste, transfer it to a mixer, and beat in three sticks of butter, 1 tablespoon at a time.

Old Fashioned Boiled Milk Coffee Frosting
Old Fashioned Boiled Milk Coffee Frosting

PREP TIME

--

minutes

TOTAL TIME

--

minutes

SERVINGS

4

cups (enough for two 9-inch)

PREP TIME

--

minutes

TOTAL TIME

--

minutes

SERVINGS

4

servings

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2

    cups granulated sugar

  • 1/4

    cup all-purpose flour

  • 3

    tablespoons cornstarch

  • 1/2

    teaspoon salt

  • 1 1/2

    tablespoons instant espresso powder

  • 1 1/2

    cups whole milk (see note)

  • 2

    teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 24

    tablespoons unsalted butter, softened (3 sticks), cut into 24 pieces

Directions

Whole milk makes the richest, tastiest frosting. Use a stand mixer; the frosting is too thick for a hand mixer. And plan ahead, as the frosting needs time to cool. 1. COOK MILK BASE Combine sugar, flour, cornstarch, salt, and espresso powder in medium bowl. Slowly whisk in milk until smooth. Pour mixture through fine-mesh strainer into medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until mixture boils and is very thick, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer milk mixture to clean bowl and cool to room temperature, about 2 hours. 2. MAKE FROSTING With stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, beat cooled milk mixture and vanilla on low speed until combined, about 30 seconds. Add butter, 1 piece at a time, and beat until incorporated, about 2 minutes. Increase speed to medium-high and beat until frosting is light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Let sit at room temperature until stiff, about 1 hour. MAKE AHEAD Frosting can be refrigerated in airtight container for 1 week. When ready to use, let stand at room temperature until softened, about 2 hours. Beat with stand mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute.

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