POPSUGAR Celebrity

Annabel Karmel: Edible Holiday Decorations the Whole Family Can Create

Dec 9 2010 - 7:00am

Editor’s note: The following is a guest post written by Annabel Karmel [1], the British children's chef and kiddie cookbook author. This week Annabel shares step-by-step instructions for holiday decorations the entire family can make, and eat, together.

The holidays are the perfect excuse to bring the family together and into the kitchen. Cookie baking is always a favorite activity, as kids love eating the tasty things they make, but there are only so many cookies a family can consume. Converting treats into home and tree decor is a great way to get even the youngest kids involved in holiday decorating. Tots as young as two can use cookie cutters to cut out shapes and crush candies for the colorful centers of our stained glass window cookies [2] – edible decorations that taste as good as they look hanging on the tree!

Step 1: Mix cookie dough

Preheat the oven to 350F. Mix the flour, baking soda, ginger, and salt into a bowl. Rub in the butter until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs, then stir in the sugar. Beat together the egg and golden syrup and mix into the flour mixture to make a smooth dough, kneading lightly with your hands.

Step 2: Roll out dough

Crush the sweets in their wrappers using a rolling pin. Sprinkle flour on a clean work surface and roll out the dough until about 1/4 inch thick, then cut into shapes using a selection of holiday cookie cutters. Transfer to lined baking sheets.

Step 3: Cut cookies

Cut out shapes in the center of each cookie, making sure you leave a good edge all around the cookie. Completely fill the hole in each cookie with crushed boiled sweets.

Step 4: Create stained glass effect

Make a hole at the top of each cookie using a drinking straw so that you will be able to thread a ribbon through it later. Bake for 11-12 minutes until golden.

Step 5: Decorate and hang

While the cookies are still warm, check the holes are still there, otherwise push a straw through again. Do not remove the cookies from the baking tray until they have cooled as the boiled sweets need to harden. Once the sweets have hardened, gently lift the cookies onto a wire rack with a palette knife to finish cooling. You can decorate the cookies with piped white icing. Thread ribbons through the holes to make loops for hanging.

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