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Martha by Mail Noah's Ark Cookie Cutters ~ Set II

This second set of Noah's Ark Cookie Cutters from Martha by Mail was offered shortly after the introduction of Set I.  The nine animals from Set II included a slithery snake, a tall & regal ostrich, a cute hippo, a single-humped Arabian camel, a gorgeous tiger, a seal, a large moose, an adorable rhino and perhaps the most memorable of all, the antarctic penguin.  This charming penguin became one of Martha Stewart Living's iconic images for the holidays and was used in several publications.  In fact, the cutter became so popular with customers, that the company decided to offer it exclusively as a promotional item for magazine subscriptions.  Collectors and bakers take note, these make wonderfully shaped cookies not only for the holidays, but for many other occasions as well.  Enjoy!

From my collection.

The label on the box.
Catalog # CNA 002

All of the cutters are carefully nested in the cleverly shaped ark box.

The decorating booklet, ark template and the Martha by Mail cookie recipe booklet.  The recipe booklet was included in every single cookie cutter set.

The Set II booklet.  These decorated cookies adorn a Christmas goose feather tree that was offered through Martha by Mail.

Text below is from the original decorating pamphlet.

A Snake & Camel.

  • Snake: To decorate the snake, first flood cookie with a smooth coating of icing, then add beady eyes and squiggly stripes while the base coat is wet using icing of the same consistency.  Flock with sanding sugar immediately for some sparkle.
  • Camel: A sugar coating spruces up a spotted camel.  Flood with icing first, then apply contrasting dots using icing of the same consistency.  Flock the wet icing with sanding sugar, allow to dry fully, then gently shake off excess sugar.

An Ostrich, Seal, & the famous Penguin

  • Seal: To silhouette a seal, first flood the entire surface with royal icing and let it dry.  Add the icing inner shadow in a contrasting color, then flock with sanding sugar while still wet.
  • Ostrich: Too pretty to hide with its head in the ground, this ostrich struts to show off its silvery plumes.  First flood with icing, then add the pattern while wet.  Place dragees for an eye and sparkly tail feathers, then flock with sugar and allow to dry.
  • Penguin: The South Pole has never seen a penguin as dapper as this one.  Flood him first with white royal icing, then green to replace his usual black coat; flock with sanding sugar to enhance the icy allure.

A Moose & Tiger.

  • Moose: This majestic giant of the woods takes on a fanciful air when covered in polka dots.  First flood with icing, then add the colorful dots while the icing is wet.  Flock with sanding sugar.
  • Tiger: Stripes seem to blend right in to the coat of this feral tiger (or panther or leopard or cheetah, depending on how you decorate this silhouette).  The trick is to pipe on stripes while the icing undercoat is wet, then draw them out.

A Hippo & Rhino.

  • Hippo: Giant white dots and a coating of pink icing are all a hippo needs to look pretty.  Apply the base coat; add the dots while the base coat is still wet for one smooth surface.
  • Rhino: A graphic pattern gives this rhino some power.  Flood the entire rhino with chocolate royal icing, being careful around the tusk and edges.  Allow icing to dry, then add curls and dots in two different colors in thicker royal icing.

Images below are from the Martha by Mail catalog.

Decorated cookies on a mantel.

A small sampling of these beautiful cookies.

The Penguin.


  1. I have often looked at the copper cookie cutters on E-Bay and marvelled at them. They are so pretty - and would look great for any occasion. Do you use them often David? I imagine they would be great for a children's party.

  2. Pru, I just had the pleasure of using them for my sister-in-law's baby shower this past Easter. I made 2 of every animal with simple royal icing decorations--everyone loved them! At the end of this month I plan on showing some of those. I agree that a kid's birthday party would be a bit more special with a few Noah's Ark cookies. Now you have me thinking!


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