I love Royal Icing!
Royal Icing is used to decorate cakes, cut-out sugar cookies, and cutout shortbread cookies. (It hardens so you can stack your decorated cookies.)
Royal Icing is ALSO used to make:
Piped decorations that harden completely, which can be saved ALMOST forever, in an airtight container, to be used later on cakes (such as flowers).
Royal Icing is also used to make Royal Icing Transfers and Intricate Piping on Cakes which I will discuss in a later post.
(It is not used to cover a cake and is nothing like buttercream frosting.)
(Royal Icing is my favorite icing to work with.)
Now I am sure you see that learning how to make the perfect Royal Icing is a necessity for cake and cookie decorators.
So let's get to business...
First, I want to say I love royal icing because it is versatile and because you can create make-ahead decorations.
If you tried decorating cut-out sugar cookies with buttercream frosting then I am sure you felt like it wasn't coming out right when you were decorating....(soft sugar cookies are different, I will talk about that in another post too)... that's because decorators do not use buttercream on decorated cookies, they use royal icing.
Royal Icing is not like buttercream, at all. The consistency, flavor and piping skills are very different.
I guess the best way to describe it is to say reminds me of marshmallows. It's light, fluffy and sweet.
I've heard complaints that meringue powder seems pricey, but it goes A LOOONNGGG way and lasts a long time, if you plan on learning cake or cookie decorating, it's worth every penny.
I used to make my own meringue from egg whites but recently switched to the meringue powder - it's so much easier, faster and has less chances for mistakes.
Get my cut-out sugar cookie recipe > here <
3 Tbspn Meringue Powder
5 Tbspn warm Water
4 cups Powdered Sugar (about 1 pound)
In a large bowl beat all ingredients on a medium speed for about 10 minutes (SET A TIMER!) until STIFF PEAKS are formed. The icing will seem "too thick" while you are beating, it's supposed to - do NOT add more water - just keep beating.
VOILA - THAT'S IT!
*All measurements are leveled (NOT heaping).
*Use all grease-free tools (glass or stainless steal).
*Use an electric mixer, do not hand mix.
*SET A TIMER when beating! You should beat for at least 10 minutes.
* This will make a STIFF consistency.
*If you want a thinner consistency, for decorating or flooding sugar cookies, thin your icing by adding more water - ONE DROP AT A TIME! A little goes a long way. (The thinning process is done AFTER making the stiff consistency.) >Learn more about thinning royal icing here.<
*Once made, keep bowl covered with a wet paper towel to prevent crusting.
*Once in piping bags, keep the tips covered with a wet paper towel to prevent the ends from crusting.
*This icing is best when used immediately.
*Store made icing (that has not been colored) in an air tight container in the freezer for up to 2 weeks - when ready to use, thaw to room temperature then mix for about 1 minute.
This is what "STIFF PEAKS" look like:
This picture shows stiff royal icing.
Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed this post!
Please share your comments and questions below ;-)
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