Royal icing -- often called for when decorating Christmas cookies -- contains raw egg whites. Are there alternatives to raw egg materials in icing?
The risk is slight, but it is certainly possible for raw egg whites to contain foodborne pathogens, such as salmonella. Fortunately, you can prepare royal icing with meringue powder -- available at crafts stores and bakery supply outlets -- or with pasteurized egg whites, which are available in most grocer's dairy cases. Both products make perfect -- and perfectly safe -- royal icing.