This is such a simple idea for a Christmas cookie but it's stunningly effective, and exactly the sort of bake that gets children all of an excited festive quiver. They're easy enough to bake with your child – or, if they're too young to concentrate on the boring cookie-mix bit, to bake ahead and then decorate with your child. You'll probably need to do the icing eyes yourself, though.

If you can't find glycerine at the supermarket or food shop, you should be able to pick some up at a chemist.


  • 225g butter
  • 225g plain flour
  • 100g cornflour
  • 100g caster sugar

For the decoration

  • 500g royal icing
  • 300ml water
  • 2 tsp glycerine
  • large white marshmallows
  • orange Tic Tacs
  • black writing icing pen
  • fizzy strawberry strips or similar
  • Mini Smarties


  • STEP 1

    Preheat the oven to 180°C/Fan 160°C/350°F/Gas mark 4

  • STEP 2

    Measure the butter, plain flour, cornflour and caster sugar into a food processor. Whizz until combined. Tip out and knead lightly to form a soft dough. Chill in the fridge for 10 minutes

  • STEP 3

    Roll out the dough and stamp out 16 circles, each about 8cm in diameter. Place on baking sheets and chill for a further 20 minutes. Then bake for about 15 minutes (they will spread a little). Leave to cool

  • STEP 4

    To make the icing, whisk the royal icing and half of the water in a free-standing electric mixer until the icing is thick and shiny. Add the glycerine and whisk again. Add the rest of the water 1 tbsp at a time, until the mixture is the consistency of thick yoghurt

  • STEP 5

    Put the cooled cookies on some non-stick paper. Spoon over the icing, so it drops off the edge of the cookies to look like melted snow. Place a marshmallow at the outer edge of each cookie

  • STEP 6

    Push a Tic Tac into the marshmallow to make a nose, draw on 2 eyes with black writing icing and place a fizzy strawberry strip around the base of each marshmallow to make a scarf. Finally, use 3 Mini Smarties to make little coloured buttons

Pic: Annabel Karmel

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