If your cookies are browning on the edges before they are done, I'd suggest checking the accuracy of your oven temp and then if necessary lowering it by about 25 degrees or so to bake.
Hi everyone! In response to some questions that have been left.....
-my dough was "dark" in the photos because it's gingerbread dough NOT sugar cookie dough. (It's just what I had on hand that day, lol!)
-no, you can't use impression mats on royal icing.
-instead of meringue powder, you can substitute 6 ounces of egg whites (that's 6 large egg whites). You would also omit the 1st addition of water, obviously
-the meringue powder brand I use has cream of tartar in it too....but I do add the extra in the recipe as well
FYI, the meringue powder brand I use also has vanillin added to it in the ingredients which is why I don't mention adding flavour to your icing here. IF you would like to add flavour to yours, do feel free to add a few drops of a non oil-based flavouring. (Oil breaks down royal icing, so make sure it's NOT oil-based.)
FYI, if you would like to have cookie icing with a bit of sheen to it (as opposed to matte, as mine is), just add 1-2 tablespoons of corn syrup to this recipe. It makes for a shinier, slightly softer icing. It will take longer to dry though, so be prepared for that.
Graceashley8, I make my icing up and thin it/tint it the evening before I'm going to use it. I do this because all those tiny pesky air bubbles will rise to the top and pop as it sits, leaving you with smooth-as-glass icing.
Mix it in your bowl, thin it with the water, tint it if desired (great if you are doing a bright colour especially, as it has time to develop & deepen.) Take a damp tea-towel, wring it out as much as possible and lay it fully over the top of the bowl...NOT touching the icing. Now take a clean grocery bag and put it over the whole bowl. (This prevents the tea-towel from drying out and then your icing crusting.) Leave it on the counter at room temp overnight. The next day, you can use the paddle on the lowest speed for 30 seconds or less to just mix it up smoothly.
IF you want to make your icing even further ahead of time, please note that your icing may need to be re-whipped before you use it again. As it sits, it will separate into three distinct layers: thick bottom icing, liquidy thin icing and then a top spongey icing. These need to be all re-mixed for about 6-8 minutes in the mixer with the paddle on lowest speed. I also don't recommend long-term storage of your icing in piping bags, as it separates there too even faster.
Spectra, I consider a "small cookie" to be less than 1.5" x 1.5" in size let's say....and a "large cookie" to be 3" x 3" and more.
As for the oven rack, that's what works best for my oven....maybe not yours. Experiment and find out what you like and what yields you the best results.
I think if you want to use a hand-mixer without burning out the motor, try making a 1/2 batch of the icing first and see how it goes.
Depending on the strength/quality of your appliance, it should be possible without straining it too much.
Often a lot of appliances need to be changed in order to bake something like this. I can definitely say that if you feel that it is time to change appliances, then it should be done and it is better not to delay with it. For example, I recently replaced a lot of things thanks to the fact that I was able to find reviews and contacts of one of the companies and there to order for themselves to help. If interested, you can look here hewlett packard phone number and contact them. I think it will be useful. Good luck!