Icing (old fashioned & homemade)

by Toya
(Las Vegas)

My grandmother used to make the best homemade icing for cakes... I remember egg whites and Hersheys powdered cocoa and sugar and whisks... The icing would harden on the cake and kind of cracked when you cut it... It was the best!!!! I was 14 when she passed and so did not get the recipe. Any advice?


Hey there Toya!

I think what you are looking for is a "Boiled Icing". I've been asking around, looking through some old cookbooks and checking the internet and the only recipe that I have found that seems to fit what you are looking for is this one:

Old Fashioned Boiled Icing

1 c. sugar
1/3 c. water
1 tsp. vinegar
2 egg whites, room temperature, stiffly beaten
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Mix together sugar, water and vinegar until well blended. Bring to a boil and boil slowly without stirring until it reaches 236 degrees on a candy thermometer. Pour slowly into egg whites, beating constantly. Add vanilla and continue beating until spreading consistency. Will frost 8 inch cake.

**NOTE: In order to make it a chocolate icing, you'll probably need to add about 1/3 cup of cocoa powder to the water, sugar, and vinegar before boiling. This is just a guess on the amount of cocoa powder, you may need to adjust the amount.

If you don't have a candy thermometer, your going to want to cook the frosting to a "soft ball" stage. To do this, you will want to boil for maybe 5 minutes or so and then use a teaspoon to drop a small amount of the icing into COLD water to cool it down. If you can form it into a soft ball, it's done.

Make sure you spread it on the cake right away because it should harden as it cools.

I hope this is what you are looking for.

Warm Dishes,

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