Saturday, 8 December 2012

Christmas Colours and Royal Icing

Wow, it's been a super-busy week! And another one's coming!!

So here's a super-quick share:
Cookie baking and decorating season has arrived with a bang (and the occasional fizzle as our royal icing virtually melts in this humidity!)

For Christmas, I've been using the following gel colours (good for royal icing, buttercream, and tylose paste and fondant):
For red: a mix of Super Red and Tulip Red - the tulip red isn't bitter like other reds.
For green: Forest Green

I've included a Teal / Sky Blue mix in the icing we've been using in the classes, too. It's a beautiful blue that complements the other Christmas colours so well.

A word of caution with Sky Blue, though. Despite its name, there isn't much subtlety about this colour - even a small drop can result in a lot more blue than sky! Use restraint, only a tiny amount is needed to get a pretty, light blue.

And remember to add some Bright White to your white, to get that clean crisp snow-white appearance.

For brown royal icing I always add cocoa powder as well as brown gel colour.
I do this for a few reasons: To minimize the amount of chemical ("E-number") colourants we're consuming; to enrich the colour; and very importantly: for me if it's brown it needs to taste like chocolate!

So I add a tablespoon of sifted cocoa powder to 250g of royal icing, and varying amounts of gel colour to get the desired brown. Adding purely cocoa powder - without food coloring - seems to make the icing heavy and sticky. Which is manageable if you are using it on its own, but it doesn't work well in conjunction with the other non-cocoa icing.

Happy creating!


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