Gingerbread Men, NOT! Part II - Royal Icing
There are some fantastic cookie decorators on the web. I am NOT one of them, but I am learning. All of the best decorators use Royal Icing. I have only made Royal Icing once before today. Making the icing is the easy part, piping is tricky.... VERY tricky.
Making Royal Icing takes only a few ingredients and a sturdy electric mixer. Here's how to do it:
2 cups (226 grams) icing sugar
1 Tablespoon meringue powder or 1 packet dried egg white
3 1/2 Tablespoons water
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
In a large mixing bowl, beat together the powdered egg white and water until the mixture is slightly foamy. Add the vanilla and sift in the icing sugar. Beat for 7 to 10 minutes until the icing is very thick. Now you are ready to fill your pipping bag and begin decorating cookies.
You must keep this icing in an airtight container, it will dry and become hard very quickly. That is what you want it to do on your cookies, not in the bowl. I used the icing as it is, but you can add paste food colouring to make more colourful cookies.
OK, my boys aren't perfect but making them was so much fun! Give it a go and bake yourself a few new friends!