Royal icing is the most common icing used by home bakers and professionals as well. It can be used for variety of tasks and that makes it a great medium to work with. It found its way into my kitchen and I have been using it ever since.
Recipe for Royal Icing
(printer friendly version)
3/4 cup warm water
5 TBL meringue powder
1 tsp cream of tartar
1kg of powdered sugar/sifted//2.25 lbs/
Make sure all your tools are grease free!
I wipe my tools with a piece of paper towel and vinegar. Wipe dry with a clean towel.
- -sift the powdered sugar
- -mix using a whisk 5 TBL of meringue powder with warm water, until slightly foamy, add cream of tarter, mix again and then add all the powdered sugar at once. Using your stand mixer, on the lowest setting, using paddle attachment, mix for 10 minutes, after 10 minutes you can add your flavorings.
- icing will be thick
- you can now color your icing
- when not in use store this icing in airtight container
- this icing behaves really well even after several weeks, just keep it in the airtight container and remix the icing when you are ready to use it again.
COLOR YOUR ICING -I recommend using food gel colorings, and letting the tinted icing sit for at least several hours/covered/ this helps to develop the color better.This works especially when working with dark colors,letting the icing rest for several hours helps to darken the icing and you will not have to use as much coloring agent.
DECORATING COOKIES - You need to thin thick icing to OUTLINE CONSISTENCY AND FLOODING CONSISTENCY. This is achieved by adding a little bit of warm water into the icing, make sure you add little by little, too much water at once is not good, it creates too many bubbles. If using tinted icing, make sure you color it before you thin the icing. I find this works the best for me.
OUTLINE IS USUALLY A LITTLE THICKER THAN FLOODING CONSISTENCY, BUT DOESN'T HAVE TO BE. EVERY DECORATOR LIKES TO WORK DIFFERENTLY.
TO CREATE A SEAMLESS ICING, YOU NEED TO FLOOD AS SOON AS YOU OUTLINE.
For flooding icing consistency 10 second rule applies, meaning, when you draw a line in the icing and it comes together in 10 seconds it is ready. 10 second Flood Icing Video Tutorial
BUBBLES IN THE ICING -When making icing for flooding, sometimes with all the mixing we let air bubbles in the icing. To help eliminate air bubbles, let the icing sit for at least 30 minutes and then gently stir with a spoon to get rid of the bubbles.
DARK BLOTCHY SPOTS on the dried royal icing-sometimes when royal icing dries on a cookie it can absorb fat from the cookie and create dark blotchy spots.I guess it is something that possibly also has to do with the amount of humidity in the air. There are few things that you can do to help prevent this:
- Let the tinted icing sit overnight, especially when using dark colors, it helps to develop color and you don't need to use as much coloring agent, and it also help with blotchy spots
- Brush a very thin layer of icing onto the cookies to seal the cookie, let dry and decorate as usual
- To speed up the drying process use fans, I primarily use ceiling fan, clean the fans periodically and shut the door in the room you are using as you drying station for your cookies
- Keep in mind that if you live in high humidity climate you need to find a way to speed up the drying process, use fans to promote more air circulation, use dehumidifier if you have one it helps with the drying time as well.
- I recommend finding what works for you the best, climate and weather can play tricks on us, so testing is always a good idea.
Facts about Cream of Tartar : is a acidic salt, a byproduct of wine making cream of tartar helps with stabilizing egg whites, it also gives them more volume and helps to produce creamier texture in desserts.
Back in the day...when I was helping out my grandmother in the kitchen she would add pinch of salt into her egg whites when beating them, and this had the similar effect on the egg whites as cream of tartar, especially when it comes to volume.
Tips, ideas on COOKIE DECORATING