This is a tutorial for the gingerbread Christmas cookie tree that I made last year. I used my Christmas cookie tree as a centerpiece on our buffet and there were such a wonderful smell of cinnamon, ginger and cloves during the Christmas days. You could also make a little forest with tree’s in different sizes and use them for a Christmas winter scenery?
I have used the Christmas cookie tree kit from Wilton. But any kind of nesting star cookie cutters can be used. To get more height to the tree, use 2 stars in the same size for each “layer”. Also remember to cut out 3 of the smallest star. Since you will be placing one on the top of the tree (this is of course optional) I use the gingerbread recipe from Martha Stewart
This is what I use:
Baked gingerbread cookie stars
Royal icing Colored green or kept in white (It’s a little hard to say how much you will be needing because it all depends on how big you want you tree)
Cake board Embellished with a pretty satin ribbon (The cake board should be large enough for the biggest star)
Gold lustre dust
Clear alcohol/lemon extract
Small paint brush
Food coloring gels (I like to mix Avocado and few drops of Leaf green from Americolor for a nice green color)
Star tip (7-9mm)
Clean dampen cloth (for cleaning the piping tip)
Sugar dragees in silver and gold
Sparkling edible glitter (Alternative, use white sugar)
Powdered sugar (Icing sugar/confectioners sugar) + a sieve
Ribbon and double sided tape for the cake board
Tip! If you want to glitter your cookie tree? Then do this after each piping layer of the stars. That way the icing is still wet and the glitter will stick much better to the icing. The same goes with the sugar dragees. For a snowy effect, sift powdered sugar over the finished tree, before you place the golden star on top.
Take 1 of the smallest stars and paint it with a little gold lustre dust mixed with drops of clear alcohol/lemon extract. Remember to paint the star on both sides. Set aside to dry.
Take some white royal icing and spread it out on the cake board with an offset spatula. Try not to smooth it out too much. Take the first star and place it in the wet royal icing.
Make sure that the royal icing is soft but not too soft. The icing should still keep it’s “star” pattern when you pipe. You can use a little water to make it softer. Take the piping bag with the star tip and fill it with the soft royal icing. Start piping, where you press out a little icing and then release the pressure, while you slowly pull the piping bag away from the cookie.
Note: Normally, I close my piping bag with a ribbon to prevent icing from oozing out. I just forgot it this time.
When you have piped the outer line of the star. Fill in the middle randomly. Let the icing set/dry for 5-10 minutes as it will help holding up the next cookie. Remember to clean the piping tip with the dampen cloth, now and then to remove any small crusts.
Place the next star on top and continue piping the next cookies.
Note: Remember to turn the cake board, as you add more layers/cookies to make sure that the cookie tree looks as straight as possible.
Cover the last small star completely with icing peaks, before placing the golden star on top. Set aside and let your Christmas cookie tree dry overnight. Note:It may take more than 1 day for the tree to dry.
Here is the finished gingerbread Christmas cookie tree.