Recipe by Sarah Phillips © 2006 Sarah Phillips CraftyBaking.com
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped (measure, then chop)
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
2 cups confectioner's sugar, sifted (measure, then sift)
2 tablespoons very hot water
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1. In a clean, medium-sized saucepan, pour the water into the pan and stir in the corn syrup. Pour the sugar dead center into the middle of the water. Make sure you don't splatter sugar on the side of the pan. Add the salt. If the sugar mounds, gently push down on the mound with a spoon so that all the sugar is moistened.
2. Without stirring, bring the sugar mixture to a slow boil. Before the mixture boils, if necessary, wash the sides of the pan using a heat proof pastry brush dipped in clean water on the inside walls of the pot above the surface of the syrup. Dip the brush in water every time before washing the side of the pan! This step removes crystals that may have accumulated on the inside of the pot. If allowed to remain, these crystals might cause the sugar syrup mixture to become grainy.
3. When the sugar is dissolved, simmer syrup about 3 minutes. Remove the sugar syrup from the heat and add the chocolate all at once, stirring continuously with a wooden spoon until the chocolate is melted. Beat in the butter. Quickly beat in half of the confectioner's sugar, with 1 tablespoon hot water, and repeat. Blend in the vanilla and beat again until smooth and shiny.
4. Set the pan of glaze in a shallow saucepan filled with 1/2 to 1-inch hot tap water to keep it warm until ready to use. Stir occasionally and keeep warm until ready to use. Do not make too far in advance of using. If icing thickens, warm and, if necessary, add a few drops warm water and stir. If too thin, let cool slightly, and if necessary, stir in a few teaspoons sifted confectioner's sugar at a time.
Adapted from Carole Walter's Great Cakes