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Humidity & Royal....need to learn more...

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Hi All,

I never had an issue before...but I used the Wilton recipe for royal. It is not setting up stiff like normal....

I whisked the meringue powder & water for a 30 seconds, then added p. sugar. It turned out creamier than normal. Sort of like Antonia's. Her recipe does taste better, but I had a "set up" issue with hers and was afraid to continue using it.

Now....it may be weather. It's been rainy and damp here. I made pumpkins almost a full 24 hours ago & they are firm. But, if I stacked or dropped one on top of the other I'd have a ding. Is this what humidity does?

I'm not freaking....if worse comes to worse, I won't stack or I'll make a little box for each one. I just would like to learn a little more to try to avoid these issues in the future. Do I need longer dry time in humid weather???

Thanks a ton!
post #2 of 19
Was there any grease present when you made the royal.
Our chronic flaw is partiality of judgement: we exaggerate the wrongs done to ourselves, and underestimate the wrongs we inflict on others - unknown
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Our chronic flaw is partiality of judgement: we exaggerate the wrongs done to ourselves, and underestimate the wrongs we inflict on others - unknown
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post #3 of 19
Thread Starter 
I don't think so....

I guess, it could be I didn't clean my equipment thoroughly?
post #4 of 19
It very well could be that humidity is the culprit.... the only other thing that comes to my mind is if you used a whole lot of coloring. Sometimes that effects the icing's ability to dry.
post #5 of 19
You said that you "whisked it". Did you use a whisk or your mixer? If you used your mixer did you mix it for a good 5 minutes or more? You have to mix it really well and for a period of time. It will go from creamy smooth to a nice thick icing that you can thin with a little water. Also do not ever use plastic. Only metal or glass bowls and tools that have been cleaned really well. Plastic can hold on to grease and grease breaks down the royal icing. Hope this helps.
post #6 of 19
Thread Starter 
I thought about it more - and maybe it WAS the color. The 2 white cookies I flooded before I did the rest of the batch orange dried fine. No worries. I also did the stems in green & some swirly vine things...they seemed okay. So, maybe it was too much orange?

I will try Antonia's recipe again. I did like it very much. The taste was great & the texture was so much better than Wilton. But, I ran into an issue with dry time. This was my very first issue. So, instead of trying to figure it out at length, I just switched back to Wilton. It ended up that the icing never got firm at all with that last batch of Antonia's icing. Even when I picked up the cookie, my finger would smudge the side. It sort of was like pressed eye shadow. Very wierd. I must have done something..but who knows what...

But, back to my current issue: they were absolutely fine to bag. I even "almost" dropped one and caught it. No dings. That was after 2 days though. Normally it only would take 1 day to secure "no worry" status.

Yup, I whisked the meringue powder and warm water for about 30 seconds. THEN, added the p. sugar, and mixed in my KA for 10 minutes on low. I tried it this way because Antonia's turns out so creamy & I thought it might make a difference. It did. The Wilton recipe did have that creamy texture to it that Antonia's does. BUT, maybe I did something in the process? Perhaps whisking air into the water/meringue powder did something? Not sure. I thought about adding a bit of cream of tartar. But, I wasn't sure why I would be doing it. I don't really know what the cream of tartar is for.

As for colors - I'm thinking I should try Americolor. Maybe that brand is better than wilton gel. Maybe I only have to add a little? The little cake supply has a ton of Americolors to try. I will give it a whirl...

But, no horrible tragedy ocurred. It has been rainy here for days. So - maybe I'll invest in a heat lamp. I read somewhere that it helped another lady.

If anyone has any more ideas...I'd love to learn about them. Thanks everyone for chiming in!
post #7 of 19
I find that Americolor is a more "true" color, so I need to add less than if I'm using Wilton coloring.
I do suggest you give Antonia74's recipe another try. I use it and I love it!!
post #8 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thanks bonniebakes....I loved it too. But, I guess I got a little freaked out when I had that "issue". Maybe I should make it a practice to wash my tools an extra time before mixing.

It also might be that my "flooding" consistancy isn't terribly runny. Maybe I'll try to find some tutorials. I know about the 7 or 10 second rule. And, I thought I'd been doing that part of it fine...but I'll double check it with some tutorials.

After that, it has to be the color. I've always found that I can't get the colors I want. I just thought it was lack of experience. But, maybe Americolor is the answer. The local cake supply seems to have a bazillion little "pots" of color. I never really took a close look. I may be able to visualize cookie designs better knowing I can just pick a color like a crayon. Instead of figuring out how to achieve the color I want.

I will give it a shot next time I'm there. Thanks for the input! I appreciate all the replies!
post #9 of 19
Hi Ladies, try wiping your tools, bowls etc down with a mix of 50/50 vinegar and water, it works a treat removing the grease residue that can stop RI from setting properly.

I also have a dehumidifier to take the moisture out of the air and use that when I need to boost my drying time.

Good luck.
Leanne
Cookiecrazy.com.au
"A flavour enjoyed by Young and Old"
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Leanne
Cookiecrazy.com.au
"A flavour enjoyed by Young and Old"
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post #10 of 19
Thread Starter 
Grozzie11 - thanks for the dehumidifier tip. I think I've heard that before...but that's another great tool to have on hand.

Most times you'll hear the star of those cake shows talking about it's not so much the cake techniques and knowing how to do things properly. It's about knowing how to fix a problem.

I'll know what to try next time for sure! Just a few more bits of info in my arsenal! It all helps. Thanks a ton...
post #11 of 19
Pleasure, glad its another idea. I LUV this forum.!!!

Everyone is always so helpful and full of ideas.

luv it luv it luv it. thanks all
Leanne
Cookiecrazy.com.au
"A flavour enjoyed by Young and Old"
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Leanne
Cookiecrazy.com.au
"A flavour enjoyed by Young and Old"
Reply
post #12 of 19
I'm having kind of the same problem here, but my cookies are turning up "dusty and dull" the RI looks dry but is crumbly when I touch it. Is not wet but powdery is the humidity to blame or am I doing something wrong? I use the wilton recipe and was doing a large batch of red using americolor. I did wash my utensils several times.

Any help will be very, very appreciated icon_biggrin.gif
post #13 of 19
Thread Starter 
DeLis - that sounds exactly like what my problem was. When I picked the cookie up & my finger lightly touched the icing...it crumbled away. Sort of like pressed eye shadow. It was the wierdest thing ever.

I thought it was something I did when I used Antonia's royal icing. This was only the 3rd time I had used it and thought I just messed something up. But, I have made the recipe again since then with no problem.

It seems...it's either the amount of red you used...although people tend to recommend americolor because they get a more true color and have to use less. ORRRR, it was the humidity. Or, maybe a little of both.

When I had my problem it had been rainy for several days. It makes you nervous to try it again.....
post #14 of 19
Thread Starter 
DeLis - that sounds exactly like what my problem was. When I picked the cookie up & my finger lightly touched the icing...it crumbled away. Sort of like pressed eye shadow. It was the wierdest thing ever.

I thought it was something I did when I used Antonia's royal icing. This was only the 3rd time I had used it and thought I just messed something up. But, I have made the recipe again since then with no problem.

It seems...it's either the amount of red you used...although people tend to recommend americolor because they get a more true color and have to use less. ORRRR, it was the humidity. Or, maybe a little of both.

When I had my problem it had been rainy for several days. It makes you nervous to try it again.....
post #15 of 19
Does the Antonia's RI recipe get really hard?? I don't want the icing so hard that people don't enjoy the cookie......... I need a good recipe for my first attempt!

Thanks
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