Meringue powder is convenient.
Meringue powder is a dried powder made of dehydrated egg whites mixed with sugar and cornstarch, flavoring, and a stabilizer called Arabic gum. Meringue powder can be stored on a kitchen shelf for a long time, with no refrigeration required.
Meringue powder is versatile.
If you mix meringue powder with confectioner’s sugar and water, it becomes royal icing. Royal icing is wonderful for decorating cookies, gingerbread houses, and most anything where a hard surface frosting is desired. If you let royal icing air dry, it becomes hard, durable, and virtually indestructible the longer it sits.
Meringue powder is safe.
Meringue powder can be used to make meringue in Pavlovas or pies, or just about any recipe that calls for egg whites. Because the dried powder is pasteurized, there is no worry about any harmful bacteria issues that have plagued the egg industry this year.
If you have not used meringue powder, consider it one of those magic ingredients that exists to make your life easier. With the holiday season coming up and lots of family cookie recipes to make and decorate, and sturdy gingerbread houses to construct, it would be wise to find a reliable source for meringue powder now and keep it on your kitchen shelf at the ready.