Traditions have always been an important part of the holiday season. The tradition of putting ornaments on Christmas trees dates back to the 18th century. The first ornaments were fruits and nuts symbolizing the certainty that life would return in the spring. As time has passed, our taste in ornaments may have changed but the tradition is still the same.
In my family, it has always been a tradition to give a new Christmas ornament every year. This year I’m keeping that tradition alive, but with a little twist. I chose to make and decorate ornaments to give as gifts. Luckily for me Wilton has everything I need to make a special ornament for the special people in my life.
I started by using Wilton’s Gingerbread Mix, but you could use Grandma’s Gingerbread recipe or your favorite recipe. I made the mix according to the directions on the box and rolled the dough out to 1/8th of an inch thick. I used my favorite holiday cookie cutters to make the ornament shapes.
Once the cookies were cut out and on the cookie sheet, I used a drinking straw to cut a hole in the top of each cookie to make it easier to later thread a decorative hanging ribbon.
Next, bake the cookies according to your recipe. After the cookies are finished baking, place on a cooling rack to cool completely. Prepare your icing while the cookies are cooling. Royal icing worked best for me, but you can also use color flow icing (you just want something that will dry completely hard). I wanted something I could easily pipe and something I could thin down to outline and fill-in.
Now that the cookies are cool and your icings are ready, the hard part begins – how to decorate them. I LOVE Wilton’s sparkling sugars; I like the look they have when the light hits them. With all the sprinkles and sugars and icing colors that Wilton has your options are endless. Once your ornaments are decorated, let them dry completely for 12-24 hours. After the cookies are dry, all you have to do is add a short ribbon through the hole in the top of the cookie. The cookies are now ready to give as a gift or hang on your own Christmas tree.
Short on time but still want to make beautiful ornaments for your tree or to give as gifts? Try Wilton’s Pre-Baked Gingerbread Ornament Cookie Kit. The kit comes with 9 pre-made gingerbread ornaments, red, white and green royal icing, sprinkles and ribbons; everything you need to make 9 decorated ornaments.