Royal icing is so easy when you use a stand mixer. It’s an icing made for decorating cakes and cookies, that is constructed from egg white. It dries hard, and in a situation where cookies will be touching each other, your decorating masterpiece won’t be destroyed.
I’ve seen many recipes over time that did not beat the egg whites prior to adding the sugar. Some of them use a fork to break up the egg whites and then add glycerin to keep the molecules loose.
I really prefer this Royal Icing recipe. I find it much easier to work with, and I can create a finer line when I pipe the icing.
I made these Valentine cookies using the sugar cookie recipe here. Then, I dipped them in a glaze made from 1 Cup of confectioners sugar and a few teaspoons of milk. Just put the sugar into a bowl, then add 3 teaspoons of milk and mix well. The mixture should be the consistency of thick cream. If it is too thick add a bit more milk until you achieve the desired consistency. You can add 1 teaspoon of vanilla or other clear flavoring if desired, or add food coloring. Then, just dip the cookies in. You may need to turn them to get even coverage. Then lay them on a cooling rack, with wax paper underneath in case they drip, until dry.
I then decorated them with the Royal Icing using a piping bag and a few different tips. Here is the recipe for the icing;
makes 2-1/2 Cups of icing
3 egg whites, from large eggs
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 lb. confectioners sugar, or icing sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon clear vanilla (optional)
food color to obtain the desired shade (optional)
Put egg whites and cream of tartar into the bowl of your stand mixer. Using the whisk attachment, start mixer on low speed and continue to beat until eggs are frothy. Gradually add the confectioners sugar. If desired you can add the vanilla at this time. Turn mixer up to speed 6 and beat mixture for 5-7 minutes until thick and glossy. You can add food coloring during the last 1-2 minutes of mixing if desired.
If you’re new to piping icing I recommend a good starter set with some basic tips. Like this one from Wilton that also includes gel food color and an offset spatula. The set shown here is about $20 through the link.
If that is more than you are willing to invest to start out, one of the most useful tips is the Wilton #18 open star tip. With this tip you can make everything from rosettes to borders and shells. Check out the video below for some quick tips on how to use this tip
One of the most important things when piping frosting is that it should flow easily, but not be so runny that it doesn’t hold it’s shape. If you are new to piping, cookies are a good place to practice different techniques. When you are ready to try doing cakes, practicing on the side of a cake pan with help you get the feel of piping on a vertical surface.
I hope you have enjoyed this post, and have found something that was helpful! Cake decorating can be a lot of fun, I hope I have inspired you to give it a try! If you have some creations that you would like to share, feel free to post them on my wall on Facebook. I’ll make an addition to this post with your awesome creations!