This rich and creamy frosting is great tasting, very easy to spread and will transform most any cake, brownies, cupcakes or doughnuts into an irresistible frosted treat.
In our family we love and use this frosting for a 6 layer of flaky sour cream pastry dough cake or as a filling for puff pastry Napoleons because both of the pastries are not sweet.
I am also excited to share with you a nice way to make this frosting a little healthier, by making homemade powdered sugar, which I learned from a blog called Heavenly Homemakers (heavenlyhomemakers.com). In their recipe the homemade powdered sugar is made with Sucanat sugar, but I made mine with Turbinado sugar and liked it so much more than the white regular pre-made powdered sugar.
I also gave you the recipe for my favorite Pastry dough which is the best vehicle for this amazing frosting and that bakes into crisp multilayered crusts.
For the Clear Orange Caramel Sauce (makes 1 3/4 cups)
To make the Clear Orange Sauce: Combine the sugar, water, orange zest, and lemon juice in a medium heavy saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar dissolves. Once the sugar dissolves, stop stirring and continue cooking, gently swirling saucepan, until the mixture thickens and turns golden brown, about 10 to 15 minutes.
Remove from the heat and add the orange juice (the mixture will bubble up). Return to medium heat and cook, stirring constantly, for about 2-3 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly. Strain through a fine mesh strainer into a mixing bowl and cool to room temperature.
To make the Turbinado powdered sugar: Put 2 cups of turbinado sugar into your blender. Place the lid on the blender. Blend for just a few seconds until it turns powdery.
To make the frosting: Using an electric stand or handheld mixer, start beating the Clear Orange sauce gradually adding the turbinado powdered sugar(1/2 cup at the time) and one or two pieces of butter. When all of the sugar and butter are completely incorporated, beat in the cream and then vanilla extract and Grand Marnier liqueur. Add the salt and continue beating until the frosting thickens and reaches a spreadable consistency, about 15 minutes. When you taste this frosting on a cake, you will know that the long beating was all worth it.
For the Flaky Sour Cream pastry dough
To make the pastry: Sift the flour, baking soda, sugar and salt into a large bowl. Use a pastry cutter, your fingertips, or 2 dinner knives to combine the flour mixture and the butter until small bean-size pieces form. Add the sour cream and knead lightly with your hands for about 2 minutes until smooth dough forms.
Form the dough and divide into 6 equal sized, smooth balls, wrap each one in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour. You will see small pieces of butter in the dough. This is good and contributes to the flaky texture. The dough is now ready to roll and use in the recipe.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Roll out each pastry ball to a 9-inch round and bake on buttered parchment paper in a tart pan with a removable bottom until just a little browned. Watch the crusts carefully, they bake fast, and should be light golden-brown. Cool each crust on the same parchment paper that it was baked.
When the crusts are cooled, frost them with the Orange Caramel frosting, let stand for a couple of hours and then cut yourself a large wedge, eat and enjoy. You deserve it.