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December 17, 2018

Cake baking – All purpose butter cream

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During the school days, one day my science teacher explained the process of digestion. She said, digestion is a process and it begins even before the food is placed in the mouth. Wonder why?? Our eyes capture the image, our nose inhales the smell and mouth starts producing the the so called ‘water’ which aids the digestion- a reason why presentation of food is equally important as the quality and taste.  Any food that looks appealing seems to attract human attention (Appealing is not mandatory in my case. Lol ) .  At times it ends after we taste the dish. For me one such edible product is American Butter cream.

Butter cream frosting is a welcome treat for sweet lovers. There are readymade frostings available but not all consumers are impressed by the taste and quality especially when butter creams can be easily whipped at home. There are many recipes for making butter cream frosting. American butter cream (ABC), Swiss meringue butter cream (SMB), Italian butter cream (IBC) are top most preferred frostings. The easiest to put together is American Butter cream because it needs softened butter, icing sugar, flavor essence and few tablespoons of milk to adjust the consistency, whip it all together and is ready for frosting. The butter-sugar ratio in ABC is 1 : 4. You could imagine the sweetness it imparts. And this is the reason I opt out ABC from my cake projects.  SMB and Italian frosting uses comparatively less sugar and uses raw eggs, however the methods is slightly complex for beginners as it must be ensured that eggs are cooked properly and must keep close eye on temperature of sugar syrup. Obviously a big deal for the impatient me.  I love to work with simple, foolproof recipes. Who doesn’t?

Ever heard of flour butter cream? You read it right. This butter cream is made from the very all purpose flour or corn flour.  It is also known as cooked custard butter cream, milk pudding butter cream or feel free to rebrand as you like but the method is effortless, recipe is super simple and the outcome is delicious and yummy butter cream.  The best part – butter to sugar ratio is 1:1. Yes, that’s it. Bonus – no icing sugar needed, recipe calls for regular granulated sugar. What more could we ask for. Once I got the process right, there was no turning back. Ever since, I loathed using American butter cream.

I use either UHT or non dairy whipped cream or pudding butter cream (as I like to call it) for all my baking projects. And tastes delicious and works like a charm for icing the cakes.

Happy baking!!



FLOUR BUTTERCREAM RECIPE – using all purpose flour


  • All purpose flour – 4½ tablespoons
  • Granulated Sugar – 1 Cup
  • Milk – 1 Cup
  • Softened unsalted butter – 1 Cup
  • Vanilla extract (or desired flavor essence) – 1/2 teaspoon


  1. Combine flour, milk and sugar in a saucepan. Place it on low heat and keep whisking to ensure no lumps are formed and to get the flour cooked completely.
  2. When the mixture starts to boil, cook for another 2 minutes before switching off the heat. Now the pudding is ready. Transfer the pudding to a bowl and cover it with plastic wrap such that wrap is pressed against the pudding surface.
  3. Place the softened butter in a bowl and with paddle attachment of the mixer, cream the softened butter until light and fluffy, approximately about 3-5 minutes. The yellowish tint of butter must turn to pale color, this is when we know the butter is ready.
  4. Begin with adding a table spoon of custard/pudding to the butter on slow speed. Wait till fully incorporated before adding more pudding. Once all pudding is added, increase the speed to medium and beat for 3 to 5 minutes until fluffy.
  5. Add the flavoring at this point and mix well. The flour butter cream is ready.

Tips and tricks

  • Ensure that the pudding is cooled completely before proceeding to the next step. To get in cooled faster, spread the pudding on big plate – Larger surface area, faster cooling- basic science J
  • Replace 4½ tablespoons all purpose flour with 2 1/4 tablespoons of corn flour also works and yields same results.
  • Refrigerate leftover butter cream in clean air tight containers or zip lock bags (I prefer zip locks). It can be freezed for a later use as well.
  • Add instant coffee when making the pudding to get delectable coffee flavored cream. This is perfect to use as a filling for éclairs and tarts.


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