Cocoa Buttercream Frosting

I survived the weekend. Friday night I was busy baking and decorating the cake for Eric's party on Saturday.

Since his party theme was Disney Cars, I took a real normal racetrack idea based on other pictures I've seen on the Internet. I put die-cast cars on the cake. Sorry the pictures are somewhat obstructed. I was so busy being Supermom, I forgot to take pictures of the finished cake before consumption.

Since I was aiming for cute and kid-friendly, I used a box of Pillsbury Funfetti cake mix instead of my usual yellow cake. It was kind of dry and weird. I don't recommend using that flavor.

Decorating the cake went well enough. I divided up the frosting. I used plain white on the sides. I used about 1 cup for the asphalt, 1 1/2 cups for the green grass, and about 1/2 cup for the writing. I noticed while decorating the cake, my hands were hot, so piping the green "grass" with a star tip got messy. I had to clean the tip often and the stars were a bit messy since they didn't separate nicely from the tip. My hot hands were an advantage for doing the lettering, though. It helped make the icing thin and shape letters easily.

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup shortening
4 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract
2-3 Tablespoons milk
6 Tablespoons cocoa powder (same as 1/4 cup plus 2 Tablespoons)
paste food coloring

1. In a large stand mixer, cream the shortening and room temperature butter together.

2. Add the clear vanilla and follow with 1 cup of powdered sugar. Mix well. Add sugar in one-cup additions and scrape sides well. Add cocoa powder, beat well and scrape the sides to incorporate thoroughly.

3. Thin with 2 tablespoons milk. Beat until quite fluffy and smooth. Yield at this point should be approximately 3 to 4 cups.

4. For the appearance of asphalt, I used black Wilton food coloring paste. I thinned it with an additional 1 tablespoon of milk because it was a bit stiff.


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