Today is a double post! Two seemingly unrelated things: 1) I have been trying to make buttercream frosting for I don’t know how long, and 2) February 14-20 is Alpha Gamma Delta’s First Week of Service! To begin with the buttercream:
I have tried to make vanilla buttercream frosting a few times. Although it wasn’t ever terrible, it wasn’t ever spectacular, either. I figured that maybe I should try a different flavour and come back to vanilla at some point when I have more experience. After reading numerous recipes, I decided on this one because of it’s simplicity. No- I’m most likely not going to melt chocolate, add espresso powder, and turn to the left 3 times under a full moon to make a basic icing. I had everything needed and it didn’t seem overly complicated!
- 1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks or ½ pound), softened (but not melted!)
- 3½ cups confectioners (powdered) sugar
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon table salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract or 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 4 tablespoons milk or heavy cream
- Cream butter for a few minutes in a mixer with the paddle attachment on medium speed. Turn off the mixer.
- Sift 3 cups powdered sugar and cocoa into the mixing bowl. Turn your mixer on the lowest speed (so the dry ingredients do not blow everywhere) until the sugar and cocoa are absorbed by the butter.
- Increase mixer speed to medium and add vanilla extract, salt, and milk/cream and beat for 3 minutes. If your frosting needs a more stiff consistency, add a little more sugar. If your frosting needs to be thinned out, add additional milk 1 tablespoon at a time.
What did I change?
-Absolutely nothing aside from using salted butter! And it turned out fantastically. It is smooth and creamy and possibly the easiest icing recipe that I have tried. It spreads wonderfully, and presents well! Unfortunately, I only have a photo of it mixed, not spread 😦
And now onto part II, Alpha Gam’s Week of Service! From February 14-20, Alpha Gams everywhere are going to try to complete 10,000 hours of service to their communities. Junior Circle might be small, but we wanted to contribute in any way possible. The Humane Society is hosting a book and movie sale this weekend, and are selling cupcakes to raise even more! I thought that making cupcakes would be a nice but small way we could give back. We made two dozen to donate, and were able to spend a few hours together. I will be volunteering through the Humane Society later in the week, and another member will be spending time with her mentee through Big Brother Big Sister! I think that one of the most important aspects of this week is to remind ourselves that there are always ways to contribute to your community.
Do you volunteer anywhere?? Do you prefer to give back in time or monetary/gift donations?