I was pretty impressed with the reviews and bravely decided to significantly reduce the recipe to the 2 cups confectioners' sugar level while following peoples' suggestion for substituting 1/4 cup of butter in place of half the shortening and reducing the unwhipped cream to a quarter cup, etc. Not sure if it matters but I used a hand mixer. It turned out okay but had sort of a raw kind of taste or something that I was not crazy about. Perhaps reducing the recipe volume that much may have been a factor? Though it is tastier than the "decorator" frostings or icings that I've tried thus far anyway.
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I was pretty impressed with the reviews and bravely decided to significantly reduce the recipe...