O Gingerbread Christmas Tree (from Andrea Meyers)! Thy leaves (made out of gingerbread cookies piped with royal icing) are so unchanging! But not for long.
Gingerbread Christmas Tree from Andrea Meyers
Wilton Christmas Tree Cookie Cutters
10-inch cake round, covered with aluminum foil or food safe decorative paper
Stand mixer with paddle attachment
Decorating tips and plastic bags (2 #16 star, 1 round)
1 recipe gingerbread men dough for 10 stars or 2 recipes for 20 stars (If you have extra you can decorate the extra cookies for the cookie tray.)
16 ounces (454 g) confectioners sugar, sifted
4 tablespoons powdered egg whites (Check the baking aisle at your grocery store.)
1/3 cup (80 ml) cold water
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
green food coloring
yellow food coloring
cinnamon imperials (not the heart-shaped)
other as desired
1. Prepare one or two batches of gingerbread dough and cut and bake 20 star cookies, 2 of each size, according to the recipe. Allow the cookies to cool completely. (TIP: Make a day or two ahead to spread the project out a bit and save time on assembly day.)
2. ROYAL ICING: In the bowl of the stand mixer, add the sifted confectioners sugar and the egg white powder, stirring to mix.
3. In a measuring cup, stir together the water, lemon juice, and vanilla. (If you want to color the icing, add some liquid coloring at this point. Reduce the amount of water slightly to compensate for the extra liquid.) Pour the mixture into the sugar and mix on low until all of the dry ingredients are incorporated, about 1 minute.
4. Increase mixer speed to high and whip for 3 minutes until the icing has stiff peaks. (Repeat for each color you need.)
3. Prepare three piping bags, two with #16 star tips and 1 with a round tip. Fill each with one color.
5. Pipe a blob of icing (any color) in the middle of the foil covered cake round. Place the largest gingerbread star on top of the blob and gently press. Continue adding blobs of icing and stacking the stars, going from the largest to the smallest. Rotate the stars a little as you go so the points don't overlap.
6. For the top star, pipe some yellow icing on it and add a cinnamon imperial if you wish, then stand it up on a blob of icing on top.
7. Begin piping the green tufts all over the tree. We pipe two or three tufts on each branch, er star point.
8. Pipe white tufts for the snow. We kind of spread those all around.
9. Add Jujubes or cinnamon imperials for the decorations. If the icing has started drying already, you may need to put a dab of wet icing on the bottom of each to make them stick.
10. Allow the tree to rest uncovered for an hour or so to make sure the icing hardens and becomes stiff. And if you have little boys who like to swipe pieces like mine do, you may need to hide the finished tree until Christmas Day.