When people think about edible Christmas tree decorations the first thing that comes to mind is probably red and white striped candy canes or those little chocolates wrapped in foil, printed with a snowman and hanging on string. But this year Le Cordon Bleu London is providing you with something a little bit different to try. Something that is quick and easy to whip up, and will make your Christmas tree a bit more unique – classic Christmas cookies!
With the help of our renowned Chefs we have compiled this guide to creating the perfect festive cookies for your Christmas tree, from expert top-tips to the perfect cookie recipe, to ensure that this year your Christmas tree is a real showstopper.
Cookie decoration ideas
There are a variety of different cookie cutters that come in festive shapes which are available to buy in your local supermarket. If you are feeling creative and would like something a bit more unique you can freehand the design of your cookies by using a sharp knife to cut out the desired shapes in your dough. You can use festive coloured string or ribbon to thread through the hole in your cookies so that they can hang nicely on your Christmas tree.
Piped royal icing: You can transfer your royal icing into a piping bag and pipe directly onto the cooled cookies.
Fondant icing: Fondant icing is softer than royal icing, and can be rolled out and cut into your desired shapes.
Boiled jam: Boiling the jam makes it easier to spread on your cookie, and lets water evaporate which makes it thicker when it cools.
Edible glitter: Edible glitter will add some festive sparkle to your cookies, and a touch of magic to your Christmas tree.
Sieved icing sugar: This can be used to create a snowy effect on your cookies in keeping with the Christmas theme.
Le Cordon Bleu Master Chefs’ top tips
Our Chefs stress the importance of resting your dough at different stages during the process of making your cookies, as it makes a big difference to the appearance of the final product, which is a key consideration if they will be hanging for all to see on your tree!
It is advised that you rest the dough in the fridge after making it, and rest it again after rolling and cutting out your festive shapes. Chilling your cookie dough controls the spread as the fats in the mixture solidifies, which means that you avoid the risk of your cookies becoming a misshapen mess!
Let us know how your Christmas cookies turned out by tweeting us or sharing a picture with the hashtag #LeCordonBleuXmas or if you are short on time why not buy some festive goodies from Café Le Cordon Bleu.
Ingredients (makes 10-12)
- 100 g butter, softened
- 100 g caster sugar
- 2 g vanilla extract
- 25 g egg
- 1 g salt
- 200 g plain flour, plus extra for rolling out
- 225 g - 250 g icing sugar, sifted
- 25 - 30 g egg whites
- squeeze of lemon juice (optional)
- food colouring of your choice
- Dough: Pre heat oven to 165°C. In a bowl add butter, sugar and vanilla and beat to create a creamy consistency. Add in the egg and mix well then finally sieve the flour and salt together and add in all at once. Stir to combine. Refrigerate dough until firm. Roll out to 6 mm thick and return to the refrigerator for a further 10 minutes. Cut dough into desired shapes, cut out a small hole in each for threading string and transfer onto a paper lined tray. Bake until golden and cooked through, about 10-15 minutes depending on size of cookies. Allow to cool on a wire rack.
- Royal icing: Stir the icing sugar into the egg whites to create a thick paste. If required add a little lemon juice to adjust the consistency. Add desired food colour to the icing and stir well. Adjust consistency for flood coating.