A question about a recipe: Nectarine Slump

I have a question about step 2 on the recipe "Nectarine Slump" from amanda. It says:

"In a mixer fitted with a paddle, cream the butter and the remaining 1 cup sugar. When it's nice and fluffy white, beat in the eggs, then the mascarpone and almond extract. Fold in the flour by hand." I don't have a standing mixer (I don't bake much). Would a hand mixer work ok?

Nectarine Slump
Recipe question for: Nectarine Slump


ChefJune September 4, 2012
The hand mixer will definitely work, but it does require your whole attention standing there holding it while you turn your butter and sugar into something fluffy like a shampooed cat. imho creaming with a wooden spoon when there's another alternative is masochistic! ;)
Reiney September 4, 2012
You'll probably want to stick to the hand mixer, but it's also possible to cream butter and sugar with a wooden spoon - choke up on the spoon, keep the ingredients to one section of the bowl, and rap the spoon against the bowl sides, back and forth, until the mix is light and fluffy. It really doesn't take that much time (and using a stand mixer, many will overcream the butter).
Benny September 6, 2012
You can over cream the butter?
Reiney September 6, 2012
Oh definitely - the butter warms up too much, resulting in the batter becoming greasy, and you lose the air bubbles created in the creaming process, and thus leavening. Cookies or other baked goods using the creaming method can end up flat, dense, greasy, and less flavourful if the butter is over-creamed. You want to get it just the point where it changes colour and then stop.

Using just at room temp butter, the whole process only takes 3-5 minutes and allows you to control the creaming and get a better feel for when it's ready. That said, I completely appreciate the stand mixer / hand mixer appeal :)

(And creaming butter or whipping cream by hand is one thing, but I'd never suggest whisking egg whites or sabayons by hand when alternatives are available!)
Amanda H. September 4, 2012
Yes, a hand mixer will definitely work!
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