Once upon a time, there was a young ingredient sitting on the back shelf of the pantry. Squished behind boxes and appliances, she longed to be used. She knew she was a gift and that her flavor would be unique and interesting if she only had the chance to show it off. So she used her telepathic powers (obviously) to call out to the young blogger whenever she passed. One fateful day the blogger heard her cries and pulled her out from behind the other ingredients!
Okay so not quite but that how I imagine it when an ingredient calls to me. It’s just screaming to be used! Who am I to say no?
I got a bunch of freeze-dried fruit for Christmas (because that’s just what you get for the foodie in your life) and after making blueberry fondant with one pack I promptly forgot about it. That is until last week it absolutely begged me to take it off the shelf. Since my successful endeavor into using powdered freeze dried fruit to flavor fondant I’ve been itching to try it in frosting so what better use for my freeze dried mango?
These are from Trader Joes. They have the best selection of the stores in my area and the best prices. I’m sure they’re also available online for a better price so if you can find them cheaper definitely do that. If you can’t get your hands on freeze-dried fruit don’t worry you can always use a fruit puree made of either fresh or frozen fruit for that part of the recipe. I like using freeze-dried fruit because you can get a much more concentrated flavor and you can control the moisture content.
The first step in this recipe is to grind the freeze-dried mango and let me tell you it is so much easier to do in a spice grinder than by hand with a knife. I already had about half of mine ground but I ended up doing the rest with a knife and a lot of determination. You can also use a mortar and pestle to grind the fruit. If you decide to use a knife start by crushing the fruit with the flat of the blade first. Whatever method you choose make sure that the resulting powder is fine enough to be sifted though a fine mesh sieve. Sift this and set aside. The sifting is really important because if you have big chunks of fruit in your frosting it can clog up your piping tip. If you’re not planning on using a tip or just want a chunky fruit frosting then you can skip this step or chop the fruit more coarsely.
Now its time to start whipping the butter up a bit. My recipe calls for salted butter while most buttercreams usually start with unsalted but I always end up adding salt at the end anyway because I think the salt really brings out the other flavors. Let the butter whip up for about 3 minutes before adding any powdered sugar. This ensures that the buttercream will end up a little more pale if you want to color it and also adds fluff. This step is not completely necessary but I think it helps.
While the butter is fluffing up add the water to the mango powder, making sure to not put it all in at once. You may need a little more or less water so leave a bit of wiggle room here. You can always as add more water but you can’t take it away. The mixture should be a bit goopy, more liquidy than a paste but not watery. You don’t have to use water for this step, you can substitute milk or cream for the water. I used water because that’s what I had but it’s a matter of preference and ease of access.
Add the powdered sugar and “puree” alternating. Again there’s a lot of wiggle room here so be sure to leave a little bit of each ingredient in case you need to make it thicker or thinner. The climate is a big factor here too. The more humid your area is the more of the powdered sugar you’ll need to add. I live in Texas so it’s incredibly humid and this recipe is geared a bit towards that climate. If you end up with frosting that’s too thick you can always add more water or some cream.
It comes out a nice pale yellow so feel free to add color to make it pop a bit more and really scream mango or you can leave it and let its natural beauty shine through. This recipe makes enough to frost an 8 in cake or 24 cupcakes.
I used this buttercream on a vanilla cupcake with blueberry filling and they were heavenly!
Filming and cutting is so hard y’all! Here’s an inside look at my cupcakes in all their glory. (also peep my first gif ever!)
- 1 lb powdered sugar
- 1 stick salted butter (room temp)
- 1 package freeze-dried mango (about 1.7 oz)
- 1/4 c. water ( cream or milk will also work here)
- Spice grinder ( or a knife and a lot of determination)
- Mixer ( hand or stand)
- Fine mesh sieve
- Grind freeze-dried mango in spice grinder until it’s powdery or chop very fine with a knife. Sift and set aside.
- Mix room temp butter on medium speed for about 3 minutes
- Add water to mango powder a little bit at a time until it’s goopy but not watery.
- Add the powdered sugar and mango “puree” alternating. Be sure to leave a small amount of powdered sugar in case your buttercream is too thin.
- Add more powdered sugar or water(can sub cream) until your frosting is the desired consistency
- Frost your baked goods ( or just eat with a spoon, I won’t tell!)