Lots of photos of the finished project can be seen in Step 11 of this Instructable.
Step 1: Bake the Cookies
In addition to the ingredients needed to make the roll-out cookie of your choice, you will need:
• Paste Style Food Color (Green and Brown for the cookies - other colors may be desired when decorating)
• Star Tree Cookie Cutter Set
• Parchment Paper
• Rolling Pin
• Oven, timer, oven mits/pot holders, mixer, measuring spoons, etc.
To make a tree like mine, you will need to acquire a star tree cookie cutter set. These sets come with a varying number of layer sizes. The set I used has 10 sizes of stars shaped cookie cutters. I made my tree a bit taller during assembly by using the same size cookie more than once in the final stack.
• Mix plenty of dough from the start to make enough cookies to see your design come together. I wanted to have at least 1 full tree plus 2 smaller trees so I mixed 5 times the recipe together at once. I didn't see any harm in having a few extra frosted sugar cookies around the house after the decorating process was complete so I went big with my estimate.
• Once you have mixed and chilled your cookie dough prepare a surface for rolling the dough out.
• Add a bit of green paste style food color and kneed the dough to create a marble effect. Add a touch of brown and kneed the dough a bit more to distribute the brown color.
• Roll-out your cookie dough and cut your star shapes paying attention to ensure you cut enough of each size to accomplish the tree sizes desired. I rolled the dough out on parchment paper and removed the scrap around the cuts as my dough was very soft after I added the food color.
• For the largest 3 sizes of stars, I cut a small star from the center to speed up the baking time and so I don't have 3 enormous cookies.
• Bake your cookies according to your recipe instructions.