Today I FINALLY was able to attend a Royal Icing Cookie Decorating workshop. I’ve been wanting to do this for YEARS and for one reason or another I have not yet attended. So when I saw this one being advertised in Eindhoven during a weekend morning, I jumped on it. Most of them are located well over an hours drive and are often at night – I hate driving late in the the dark, light drizzle and alone.
The course was 100% in Nederlands but I was able to follow along just fine. The printed directions for the cookies and icing – I’ll use google translate one time and I’ll be fine.
So glad I attended – it was the kick I needed to confirm I’d like to do more. As it was a 3-hour course, we didn’t get the make the icing nor bake the cookies, but those were supplied. We got to mix up the colors, so we could feel the correct consistency. We learned about different nozzle brands and tip numbers – i.e. Wilton vs PME. Learned the correct way to fill the piping bags and were given demonstrations on how to decorate each of our cookies and then set off on our own.
We all had the same cookies but in the end, we all left with different styles – some were very VERY very detailed and meticulous… others a bit more creative and easy going. I loved it and loved each person’s creativity!
These are mine – not 100% professional looking yet but hopefully you agree – not too bad for my first time!!
For years now, my daughter and I have been watching so many amazing cookie designers in awe and our favorite Hani from Haniela’s and of course, Sweet Ambs and TheFlourBoxBakery! Of course, now I follow some local Dutch ones too. Do you know any I need to follow – let me know!
They typically have to dry for a good 8 hours, but I did let my #1 fan and cookie lover, try the smallest cookie and her opinion was reassuring and gave me a yummy thumbs up!
So, now we just need to buy a few additional supplies and then we are now going to give our best at Royal Icing Cookie Decorating as a hobby.
MUST HAVES FOR BAKING COOKIES
Flavoring such as vanilla
And of course the needed tools like an oven, rolling pin, sheet pan, stand or hand mixer, extra large bowl, parchment paper, cookie cutters and a spatular.
MUST HAVES FOR ICING
3 or 4 couplers
3 nozzles size 2
1 or 2 nozzles size 1.5
Piping bags (disposable are handy)
Food coloring (gel)
Extra bowls & spoons to mix up small batches of food coloring
HANDY BUT NOT NECESSARY
Edible food markers – ideal when you want to draw faces
Tip cover set
Icing bag ties
Stand Mixer – my #1 most wanted Christmas gift. I just bought a hand mixer as my last one broke and this will work just fine for now!
Some addition helpful information:
SUGAR COOKIE TIPS
- Sift all your dry ingredients
- Use room temperature butter
- Chill the cookie dough for at least 30 minutes (if you are using a chill-required recipe)
- Roll it on a non-stick surface to avoid a mess
- Use a straight rolling pin
- Line cookie baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone pad for baking
- Once they’re baking, do NOT open the oven door for a peek
- Let cookies cool completely before icing them
- Store cookies in a cool, dry place
ROYAL ICING TIPS
- Sift powdered sugar
- Mix until the shine is gone
- Add water gradually to mixture
- Cover icing with a damp towel
- Use toothpick to add color to the icing
- Color icing in small batches
- Put icing immediately into piping bag
- Always test icing stream before decorating
- Give icing 30 mins to dry on cool, flat surface
FAIR WARNNG: All friends and family should be prepared to receive cookies from M & I for every holiday and occasion from now on! 🙂
Once I have all our supplies here and we do our first set of cookies together, I’ll post about it and share photos… hopefully this week as we’re on herfstvakantie – if not, soon! We are both very much looking forward to it!
UPDATE: I still do not have a stand mixer so I’ve made a couple batches of cookies with a hand mixer – while it works somewhat – truthfully – it sucks and I NEED a stand mixer ASAP! Here are some photos of the cookies I made. Still far from professional but I’m getting the consistency better and experimenting with the cookie recipe – some are chewy some spread more but they all test yummy. Oh and I desperately need more cutters… the ones I have are quite boring 🙂
Today I had one mom turn down a cookie as it had too much colouring on it. I thought for a minute she sounds like me – but at the same time, I know the coloring in the EU is much better than US, but still – Okay. I’ve done s each and founds some natural solutions which I may try. I’ll post them here for a “book mark” and in the future I can refer back.
Ways To Make Natural Dyes:
- Pink: Add 1 to 2 teaspoons strawberry powder for every 1 cup of royal icing. You can dissolve the powder in 1 to 2 tablespoons water before you add it if you want to minimize the risk of clumps.
- Red: Add 1 to 2 teaspoons beet powder for every 1 cup of royal icing. Dissolve the powder in 1 to 2 tablespoons water before you add it if you want to minimize the risk of clumps.
- Orange: Add 1 to 2 teaspoons carrot powder for every 1 cup of royal icing. Dissolve the powder in 1 to 2 tablespoons water before you add it if you want to minimize the risk of clumps.
- Yellow: Bring 1 cup of water and about 1/8 teaspoon (1 small pinch) saffron threads to a simmer over medium heat. Remove the mixture from the heat, and let steep for 15 minutes. Strain, then return the mixture to the pot. Reduce to 3 to 4 tablespoons, then transfer to a small jar to cool completely. Add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon yellow color for every 1 cup of royal icing.
- Green: Add 1 to 2 teaspoons matcha for every 1 cup royal icing, dissolving the powder in 1 to 2 tablespoons water before you add it if you like.
- Blue: Combine 2 cups shredded red cabbage and 1 1/2 cups water in a small pot. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat. Remove the mixture from the heat, and let steep for 15 minutes. Strain, then return the mixture to the pot. Reduce to 3 to 4 tablespoons, then stir in a small pinch of baking soda—this will turn the color from purple to blue! Transfer to a jar to cool completely. Add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon blue color for every 1 cup of royal icing.
- Purple: Combine 2 cups blueberries and 1/4 cup water in a small pot. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat. Simmer until the berries burst and begin to break down. Use a potato masher to mash the berries, then strain the liquid, discarding the solids. Return the juice to the pot and bring back to a simmer. Reduce to 1/4 cup, then transfer to a jar to cool completely. Add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon purple color to 1 cup of royal icing.