So I had mentioned awhile back that I had an Italian themed supper club dinner that I went to a few weeks ago. The dessert that I brought were my Bella Lucia cupcakes. Back when I had my cupcakery in Charlotte, NC, all my cupcakes had names and personalities. My Italian inspired one was Bella Lucia. She was a vanilla cake filled with Nutella and topped with a stracciatella Swiss buttercream frosting. In fact, most of my cupcakes were topped with flavored Swiss buttercreams. If you don't know the difference, a Swiss buttercream is different from that of a traditional buttercream in that you don't use powdered sugar. It gives it a smoother consistency because this eliminates the graininess. Also, if it sits for awhile, it won't harden like a traditional buttercream. I absolutely love both kinds but the Swiss buttercream, while a bit more involved to make, fit most of my cupcake flavors by being more delicate in flavor and allowed all the components of the cupcake to shine. I found that sometimes a traditional buttercream was so sugary that it tended to overtake all the other flavors. A Swiss buttercream literally melts in your mouth.
It takes a few more steps but the process is pretty simple. The best part? You can make this base and then use that base to flavor your buttercream any way you want! It also freezes beautifully. So why not make a big batch and save some for later? You would just need to let the frozen buttercream come back to room temperature and rewhip it into shape. Couldn't get easier than that!
For this particular cupcake, I used my cupcake base recipe which I have posted before while making my pumpkin nutella muffins. The link is here. Then I used a teaspoon and created a hole in the middle of the cupcakes. I then filled it with a generous amount of nutella. You don't need to be too careful since the buttercream will cover everything.
Also the cake balls you remove are a baker's treat. That's law.
Making the Swiss butter cream is next. Don't worry. I took a video to show you how you can do it yourselves. It looks intimidating but it really is just a few steps and only 3 ingredients! Having a stand mixer is almost essential in this process as it takes some time.
Swiss Buttercream (Base)
INGREDIENTS: 250g egg whites
3 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
Set up a double broiler. This can be done by boiling water in a medium sauce pan and putting a heat resistant bowl on top of the pan, being careful that the boiling water doesn't touch the bottom of the bowl.
In the bowl, measure out the egg whites and sugar. Place the bowl on the double broiler and stir constantly until the mix reaches 150 degrees.
Immediately pour the mixture into the stand mixers bowl. Mix at medium to high speed until the bowl is complete cool to the touch. The mixture will turn white and fluffy in color like a meringue.
Once this happens, slowly add the butter, one pat at a time, taking care that the butter is fully incorporated before adding the next pat. Keep going until all the butter is gone.
Whip until the buttercream becomes smooth and thick forming stiff peaks.
That's it! At this point you can add any flavorings that you want. Some cooled, melted dark chocolate or nutella or vanilla or berry puree etc...
For my stracciatella, I took some dark chocolate and ground it up in a food processor and then folded them into the buttercream. YUM. It also looks beautiful. I then topped the cupcakes with with some shaved dark chocolate to finish it off.
Don't they look amazing? They taste even better! Take a look at the video at the process. It really is that easy!
How easy was that? If you ever thought that you couldn't bake (beyond that of a store mix), you are completely wrong. This buttercream is taking things to another level PLUS it is easy! Paired with my basic cupcake recipe which you can also flavor in multiple ways, you can dazzle your friends and family!