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Cookie Press Decorating Tips

The buttery spritz cookie joined the Christmas cookie repertoire from Sweden. Originally squeezed through a press and then twisted by hand into "S" and "O" shapes, this delightfully rich mouthful has evolved into a cookie of many shapes thanks to the cookie press.

The ease of the cookie press makes it a handy tool in the Christmas kitchen. Children adore squirting out the dough and decorating the baked confections. Adults find it quite enjoyable, too!

Christmas is a time when homemade cookies take on added luster. In their simplicity and wholesomeness they make wonderfully thoughtful gifts. Cheerfully wrapped and shared with family and friends, they convey the holiday spirit in its purest—and most delicious—form.

Its as easy to decorate cookie press cookies as it is to make them. Here are a few tips to ensure success:

• Use the decorating pens from the WS Cookie Decorating Kit or a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip, for the most precise design.

• A simple color palette witll showcase the delicate shapes of the cookies. For example, select one decorating pen color and complement it with white icing, then finish with the sugars and nonpareils.

• For a quick and easy decorating scheme, divide the decorating sugars among small bowls. Coat the cookies with royal icing then gently press them, icing sides down, into the decorating sugars to coat.

• Royal icing can be used as glue for the larger candy decorations in the WS Cookie Decorating Kit. Pipe a drop of icing on the cookies and gently press the decoration into it. Let dry for a few minutes.

• Cookie Press cookies make lovely decorations for wreaths and trees. Before baking, pierce a hole into the cookie with a wooden skewer. Upon removing the cookies from the oven, pierce the hole again. When the cookies have cooled, gently thread transparent fishing line (available at sporting goods stores) or twine through the hole and tie onto the wreath or tree.