Evergreen Cookies with Ermine Frosting

Evergreen Cookies with Ermine Frosting

A simple, no-roll sugar cookie that makes 3D trees and wreaths. This old-school frosting, stabilized and volumized with a milk-and-flour roux and equal parts butter and shortening, makes for a fluffy, yet sturdy, topping that's not too sweet to pipe on generously. Decorate with sugar pearls, dragees, or sprinkles. Once set, cookies can be stored in a single layer in an airtight container up to 3 days, or frozen up to 3 months.
  • Preparation:
  • Cooking:
  • Total:
  • Serves: 36 persons



  1. Step 1

    Stir milk and 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon flour together in a small saucepan. Cook, stirring constantly, over medium heat until thickened and bubbly, about 5 minutes. Pour into a bowl; place a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface to prevent a skin from forming. Let cool completely, about 30 minutes.
  2. Step 2

    Transfer cooled milk mixture to a large bowl. Add white sugar, butter, shortening, vanilla extract, and almond extract. Beat with an electric mixer on high speed until frosting is light and creamy, about 5 minutes. Divide frosting among 3 small bowls and tint by beating in enough food coloring to achieve 3 distinct shades of green. Transfer to piping bags fitted with small, medium, and large star tips.
  3. Step 3

    Position racks in upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Lightly grease 2 large baking sheets. Place 1 tablespoon sugar on a small rimmed plate.
  4. Step 4

    Beat butter, shortening, 1/2 cup white sugar, and powdered sugar for cookies together with an electric mixer in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla extract.
  5. Step 5

    Whisk flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt together in another bowl. Stir flour mixture into butter mixture.
  6. Step 6

    Shape into 1 1/2-inch balls. Arrange 2 inches apart on prepared pans. Dip the bottom of a glass in water; then in the plate of white sugar. Press balls to flatten slightly with the sugar-rimmed glass bottom.
  7. Step 7

    Bake in the preheated oven until lightly browned, 10 to 12 minutes, rotating pans halfway through. Transfer to a wire rack and cool completely, 10 to 15 minutes more.
  8. Step 8

    Pipe frosting onto cookies as desired, making wreaths or trees.