My mum taught me how to bake from a very early age and she bought me a set of star cutters years ago but it wasnt until I had my own children that I really experimented with them.
My mum was a keen baker and was always making cakes and tasty treats for the local schools and churches for their various raffles. She sadly died 3 years ago but now i have my children involved doing the same thing and hopefully her passion will be kept alive through them. They absolutely love making mini versions!
Last christmas we found that wrapping these in cellophane with plenty of ribbons turns them into great gifts.
They are so decorative its almost sad to eat them....but they are too yummy not to!
Pre heat oven to 180 degrees C (gas mark 4). weigh the butter and and sugar and add to a large mixing bowl. Cream them together untill light and fluffy.
Break the eggs into a small bowl and lightly beat together.
Add a small amount of egg to the creamed butter and sugar and beat well. Gradually add little by little, beating after each addition untill all the egg has been added.
Beat in the vanilla essence and cinnamon (for that lovely Christmassy smell)
Weigh the flour and add to the mixture a little at a time. Stir to make a nice stiff dough.
Wrap the dough in polythene and refridgerate for 15 minutes.( this will make it easier to roll out!)
Sift some flour on to your work surface and remove dough from the fridge and polythene wrapping. Roll out dough to about 1/2“ /1.2cm thick.
Cut out with star shaped cutters that increase in size. Place cookies on a greased or lined baking sheet.
Gather up the remaining dough and kneed together before rolling out again to cut more cookies. Continue untill all the dough has been used.
Bake the biscuits in the oven for 15-20 minutes, untill they are golden brown. then reomve from the oven and place on a cooling rack
In a small bowl, mix the icing sugar with a tiny bit of warm water together to make glace icing. add the water a small amount at a time untill you get a good consistancy.
Once the cookies are cooled use the glace icing to stick the cookies together in a tree shape. Start at the bottom with the largest cookie working up to the smallest on the top. Use the very smallest to make the star standing upright on the top.
This is the fun bit....Decorate!!! Use silver and coloured balls as baubles and the writing icing as tinsel. Drape lines of it from point to point. Use little dabs of remaining glace icing to stick the balls on. Theres no set pattern. This is your chance to let your creative skills run riot!
Trying dribbling some glace icing over the top of the tree for a snow covered effect.
Or add a few drops of green food colouring to the dough mixture (when you add the vanilla) to give a evergreen tree colour, as i have done in the picture.
The more cookies you have the more you can layer them up and the higher and more impressive it will be. i generally use 2 of each size cookie cutter making the tree 24 cookies high.
This makes a wonderful and edible centre piece for a christmas table! (And children love making them too!)
Please note: this recipe has been created and uploaded by a member of the Tesco Real Food online community. Tesco does not test customer recipes so cannot accept responsibility for the content, validate the results or answer queries regarding them.