Merry Christmas to all geeks


Some say 2012 was the year when 3D printing hit the mass market. Well, here’s my small contribution based on my own christmas tree design as well as the classical Penrose kite and dart. (I know. It’s 2013 now, but the cookie cutters were actually printed in 2012!) As a follow-up to my post on cookie tessallations a friend helped me print cookie cutters so I could make ginger bread cookies with a minimal waste of dough. The files needed for printing can be downloaded from Thingiverse. Given the recent findings on how cutlery, plates, music and color affect flavor perception, it came as no surprise that my tessellated gingerbread cookies had a somewhat more exquisite and distinct taste compared to “normal” gingerbread cookies!

This is what the christmas tree design looked like out of the program Tess used to create the tessallations.

Files for 3D printing are available from Thingiverse.

Roll your dough to about 2 mm thickness and fill with your favorite holiday tessellation!

A random Penrose tiling – fascinating, but quite obvious from the pattern that I lack the training needed to avoid creating edges where the tessallation stops…

Further reading: Recreational kitchen mathematics: Cookie tessellations


  1. Nice to see an entry on your blog again, looking forward to many new interesting articles in 2014!

  2. how about sharing that cookie recipe, they look delicious, thank you for this wonderful website, best wishes for a happy and yummy holiday.

    • Ginger bread cookies
      150 g butter
      140 g syrup, dark
      175 g sugar
      100 g heavy cream
      0.5 t cloves, ground
      0.5 t ginger, ground
      2 t cinnamon
      1 t baking powder
      ca. 450 g wheat flour (all purpose)

      Gently heat butter, syrup and sugar until butter has melted. Remove from heat. Stir in heavy cream. Add spices, baking powder and most of the flour and work into the dough. Add rest of flour if necessary. When properly kneaded, leave to rest in fridge over night. Take approx 1/4 of the dough and roll out until about 2-3 mm thick. Use templates as desired. Bake at 175 °C for about 9-10 min (watch carefully so they don’t burn). Leave to cool. The dough becomes very sticky when warm, so work together leftovers (unless you use tesselating templates) and put them in the fridge to cool before you roll out again. Enjoy!

      (recipe adapted from

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