Double Marbled Ornament Cookies
Almond Cut-Out Cookies
- 3 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour*
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 cup salted butter, cold and cut into chunks
- 1 cup Imperial Sugar Extra Fine Granulated Sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- Red gel paste food coloring
- Royal Icing
- Ivory gel paste food coloring
- Red gel paste food coloring
- Gold luster dust (optional)
- Clear alcohol, such as Everclear or vodka (optional)
- *Spoon & Sweep method: Use a spoon to fill measuring cup with flour until required amount is obtained. Scooping measuring cup directly into flour bag will firmly pack flour resulting in too much flour required for recipe.
- Start by making base dough from almond cut-out cookie recipe.
- Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Whisk flour and baking powder together. Set aside.
- Cream butter and sugar together for a few minutes until fluffy. Beat in egg and extract. On low speed, add flour mixture in three additions. Beat until just combined. You may need to knead in any dry bits in the bottom of the bowl by hand.
- Divide dough into two portions and tint one portion with red gel paste food coloring. You can use any color combination your heart desires, just be sure to use gel paste colorings.
- Tear off portions of each dough and press together, kneading lightly to combine. Take care not to mix them – think of Play-Doh – you don’t want to create a new color, just swirl them.
- On a floured surface, use a floured rolling pin to roll dough to 3/8” thickness. Cut with cookie cutters. To help prevent spreading, place shapes in freezer for 5-10 minutes before baking.
- Take remaining dough and press gently together one time and re-roll. To keep colors from getting muddled, re-roll only one time. Repeat with remaining dough, breaking off portions as you go.
- Bake for 8-13 minutes, depending on size of cookies. Cookies will not brown, but should look done in center. Rest on cookie sheet for 2 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Once cookies are baked and cooled, it’s time for icing. Make royal icing and tint in ivory and red, or any colors you choose. A little goes a long way with gel paste food coloring.
- Thin each color with water, a bit at a time, until you can drop a ribbon of icing back into the bowl, and it disappears in a 5-second count. Cover with a damp dishtowel and let rest for a few minutes. Stir gently, popping any large air bubbles. Transfer some of each color into separate squeeze bottles.
- Hint: don’t combine all of your icing at once. You’ll probably need a few fresh bowls.
- Pour one color into a bowl larger than your cookies. Squeeze contrasting color from squeeze bottle in a random pattern on top.
- Dip tops of cookies into icing, pull cookie up and tilt to release extra icing. Shake cookie if needed to distribute evenly. Use a toothpick to pop air bubbles and, if necessary, clean up edges.
- Let cookies dry uncovered for 6-8 hours or overnight.
- The next day, add gold accents if desired. Use an FDA-approved gold luster dust and clear alcohol, such as vodka or Everclear. Stir about 1/2 teaspoon of each together to make a paint. Adjust as needed with more dust or alcohol.
- Use a food-only small paintbrush (a child’s paintbrush size is perfect) to flick the “paint” onto the cookies. Warning: it WILL be messy.
- If desired, paint top of each cookie with remaining gold for ornament.
- The gold dries quickly, so they’ll be ready for giving – or eating! – right away.