Christmas Tree Cookie Platter
- 1/2 cup + 1/2 tablespoon butter flavored Crisco
- 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons Dixie Crystals Extra Fine Granulated Sugar
- 2 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons of one large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/4 cups bleached flour*
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
- Royal Icing
- Gel paste food coloring: green, yellow, blue, purple, red, pink, and white
- For Decorating
- Disposable icing bags
- Coupler and #2 decorating tips
- Squeeze bottles
- White sparkling sugar
*Spoon & Sweep method: Use a spoon to fill measuring cup with flour until required amount is obtained. Scooping measuring cup directly into flour bag will firmly pack flour resulting in too much flour required for recipe.
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- In a mixing bowl, cream the Crisco and sugar together.
- Beat one egg in another bowl and measure out 2 tablespoons. Add 2 tablespoons of egg into mixing bowl with water and vanilla until mixed.
- Then, blend in remaining dry ingredients on low speed till mixed.
- If dough is soft, wrap in plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator for 30 minutes.
- Roll dough to 1/4 to 3/8-thick. Cut into shapes: tree, star, small circles, and tiny circles. (Hint: if you don’t have a tiny circle cookie cutter, use the end of a decorating tip.)
- Bake 11 to 12 minutes on an ungreased cookie sheet until the edges just begin to brown. Be careful not to over bake.
- Remove from oven once done and cool on a wire rack. Let them cool completely before decorating.
- Make the royal icing. Divide into bowl and cover each with plastic wrap, pressing wrap onto the icing to prevent crusting. Tint icing green for trees, several different colors for ornaments, yellow for stars, and white for lights.
- For the trees, outline using a #2 tip.
- Flood the trees with icing. Start by thinning icing with water, a bit at a time, stirring with a silicone spatula. Add water until a ribbon of icing dropped back onto itself disappears in a count of “one-thousand-one, one-thousand-two.” If too thin, add in more sifted powdered sugar. Cover icing with a damp dish towel and let sit for several minutes. Stir gently to pop any large air bubbles and pour into a squeeze bottle. Flood cookies with thinned icing using a toothpick to guide to edges and pop air bubbles.
- Repeat this process with star cookie in yellow icing.
- Since circles are notorious for being difficult to outline, use dip method. Thin icings as above, but make the ribbon of icing a bit thicker, a one-thousand-five or so count. It doesn’t have to be exact.
- Dip cookies face-down into thinned icing, making sure to get the entire surface. Lightly scrape excess icing off on side of the bowl.
- If you accidentally scrape too much, dip again. Shake each dipped cookie gently to distribute icing. Pop air bubbles with a toothpick.
- Repeat process with tiny cookies, but after dipping, immediately dip into sparkling sugar. These will be tree “twinkle lights.”
- Let cookies dry uncovered for 6-8 hours or overnight.
- When ready to serve, stack tree cookies to make a tree shape. Add ornaments on sides and twinkle light cookies across. Place a star cookie at the top.
- Use as many cookies as you like, making a bigger or smaller tree depending on the size of your party. The Christmas Tree pictured here has 16 tree cookies.