I seem to have a problem with cream cheese icing. I cannot get it to stay nice and thick and spreadable. It seems that as soon as I add the icing sugar to the cream cheese, the whole thing just turns to water...well, very runny anyway and often far too runny to even put on the cake. Ends up as more of a dip really.
So I have had a look on the internet to see if I can find any help. What I really need to know is why it is going wrong and if there is a simple solution I can employ when making it in the future.
The first few sites I looked at appeared promising from the subject heading, but was just a lot of people replying saying, "oh, I don't know why yours has gone wrong. Here's my recipe which works for me every time." Yeah, okay, but I don't really want to just be trying lots of slightly differing recipes just to work out one I can use. I think that if I know what's going wrong, I can just adapt the recipe I have. Also, some suggestions are to exclude any milk. Yep, not using any milk at the moment.
There is however a useful thread on Flickr - Cupcakes Take the Cake. Some suggestions are to add more icing sugar, but I feel like I'd have to add a shed more to even get the icing to a vaguely spreadable consistency, and it's already pretty sweet! There does however seem to be an agreement of opinion that overbeating causes some of the problems, and the post from Rebecca's Cakes suggests making a butter icing first, then adding the cream cheese last mixing only until combined. This sounds doable - although the quantities she suggests are huge!
Finally I had a look on Nigella's website at the thread there and that's just offering up recipes which work. One posting suggests Rachel Allen's recipe as a really good one - how on earth did she/he get it to work!
I'm going to try making the butter icing first, and then add the cheese. See how it goes!