All of my cookies are made from scratch the week they are due to ensure freshness. The cookies are individually heat sealed will remain fresh for about 2 weeks.
Royal icing is a unique type of icing that is made from confectioners’ sugar, water, cream of tartar, flavoring (I mainly use vanilla), and meringue powder. It dries firm to the touch.
Storing Cookies Before Your Event
Cookies are not to be refrigerated and are to be stored sitting out at room temperature. Keep cookies in a cool environment with low humidity. Humidity and moisture will ruin the royal icing by causing it to get splotchy or begin to dissolve.
The cookies can be placed in a freezer bag then in a plastic container with a lid that seals well. You can also wrap your container in plastic wrap. To thaw, place on a counter top or table and let them sit overnight - don't open your container or bag! Do not place in the refrigerator to thaw as condensation may develop and ruin the icing. Sometimes after thawing, the icing will bleed (one color mixing into another) or spots may appear on the icing (this will happen more with dark colors).
Royal icing can be used for a variety of techniques, each requiring a different consistency of icing. The icing I use is either stiff, medium, or flood:
This is how the icing comes out of the mixing bowl. It is thick and can hold a peak. It also dries the fastest out of all the consistencies.
This consistency is made when mixing a little bit of water with stiff consistency. It can still hold its shape, but is smooth and perfect for piping letters or other small details.
This is made by adding even more water to the icing. It is like a thick pancake batter. I use this icing to cover the entire top of the cookie (this is called flooding the cookie).