So what have I learnt from my experimentation with iced cookies?
That I need a LOT of practice!
Apart from that, here are a few tips from a novice.
1. Once you find the right recipe- one that bakes nice and flat- bake your cookies the day before you want to ice them and several days before you want to serve them. The icing takes up to 24 hours to dry.
2. Do not underestimate the value of YouTube tutorials!
3. Decide on a couple of designs you want to try on your cookies. Trying to think of a design when you have your icing mixed and ready does not work.
4. Once your cookies are cooled and ready to ice, your mise en place is essential!!! Its a French phrase which means “putting in place”, as in set up.
5. Have three times as many piping bags as you think you’ll need. If you’ve never folded a paper piping cone, plastic disposable bags work really well and if you snip off the tip carefully you don’t need nozzles.
6. Mix your royal icing. I found that for me a 20 second icing was perfect for lines and a 14 second icing for flooding. What this means is that once you’ve finished mixing, count how long the icing takes to smooth out again. You want it a little runny for flooding, but for piping and lines it has to hold its shape.
7. If you’re not trying the wet-on-wet technique to start with, wait for the icing to dry!