As weird as it may sound, but I used to be scared of royal icing. And that was before ever even trying to make it or working with it. I guess, I overheard somehow talk about their difficulties with making it, so that it my head it became that dragon of an icing that was ridiculously hard/impossible to slay …errr make.
For a while I didn’t even try. Thinking, why would I try making something that could get me killed in the process. Or if not me a lot of egg whites and powdered sugar.
Well, eventually I gathered all strength and courage that I could muster up and…. I slayed the dragon!
It was actually very easy. So I made it again and again and eventually I discovered Meringue Powder. Which made making royal icing even easier.
But then we started traveling and I had to get used to get by with a lot fewer tools and ingredients. For some decorated cookies I made I even learned how to make egg white royal icing by hand since at the moment I don’t have a mixer here.
And even that was easy. So easy that I have to share the recipe and technique with you. And also because I promised you a while back already, when I was making glaze icing for cookies.
Start by sifting the icing sugar in a bowl. You might not need all of it, but it is better to be prepared.
Royal icing cannot stand grease or fat of any kind, therefore it is important that your utensils are very clean. Metal and glass are better than plastic. Rinse them with hot water and soap.
Remove the spindle that connects the egg yolk to the egg white. Otherwise it will later on plug up your icing tip.
Proceed in the same pattern with the rest of the icing sugar. Only add icing sugar once the previous addition is fully incorporated.
Slowly you will notice that the icing forms. The mixture gets thicker, whiter and stiffer. The icing is done once you reach the stiff peak phase. When you remove the spatula from the icing a peak will form on top of the icing and on the end of the spatula.
The peaks will keep standing up and not fall back into the icing.
The finished royal icing has to be covered up to prevent it from crystallizing and drying out.
Put one layer of plastic wrap right on top of the icing and another layer to cover up the bowl.
- 1 ¼ - 1 ½ cups icing sugar
- 1 egg white
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- Sift icing sugar into a bowl. Separate egg and place egg white in the bowl you want to make the icing in. Add lemon juice.
- Add a couple of tablespoons of icing sugar to the egg white and lemon juice mixture. With a clean spatula start working the icing sugar into the egg white. Once the icing sugar and egg white are fully incorporated add another couple of tablespoons of icing sugar and continue mixing them together.
- Proceed in same way with rest of the icing sugar. Only add icing sugar once the previous addition is fully incorporated.
- The mixture starts getting thicker, whiter and stiffer. Icing is done once you reach the stiff peak phase. When you remove the spatula from the icing a peak will form on top of the icing and on the end of the spatula and not fall back into the icing. Cover with plastic wrap to avoid drying out and crusting.