Royal icing is that hard white icing traditionally spread over marzipan on fruit Christmas cakes and wedding cakes.
An extremely versatile icing. It can be used to create either a flat surface on cakes or a textured finish. It can be piped to create intricate patterns and used as “glue” to stick decorations onto cakes.
Royal icing can be bought ready-made, but it is easy to make at home using a food mixer.
Although traditionally made with raw egg white, because of the possible risk of salmonella, a safer option is to use dried egg white (meringue powder). You can find this at larger supermarkets, cake stockists or order online.
Sieve the icing sugar and dried egg powder into a clean grease free mixing bowl.
Add the water and mix on a slow speed to a thick paste. If it is crumbly, add a few more drops of water.
Leave the mixer on slow and beat for 5-10 minutes until the icing is thick and glossy and stands up in peaks. If you beat it too fast your mixture will be full of air bubbles which may make it difficult to pipe or spread neatly.
Stir in the glycerine and/or lemon if using.
Whisk the egg whites in a clean grease-free bowl until they become frothy.
Fold in the icing sugar a bit at a time then stir in the glycerine and /or lemon juice if you’re using them.
Beat the mixture thoroughly for 5-10 minutes until the mixture becomes thick and the icing stands up in peaks.