Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Cream butter and sugar. Beat eggs and add the cream.
Sift flour and spices together twice. Combine sugar and egg mixtures, then sift
in the flour. Work this into a soft dough.
Dust the work surface with confectioners' sugar and roll out dough 1/4 inch
thick. Cut into diamond shapes with a tin cutter or pie crimper and set them on
greased baking sheets. Bake 8 to 12 minutes, or until light brown on the bottom.
Cool on racks. While the cookies are cooling, reset the oven to 200 degrees F and
prepare the icing as follows.
Icing: Beat egg yolks and water, then sift in confectioners' sugar. Beat
until the icing becomes thick and batter-like. If you prefer, you may at this point
flavor it with almond extract or rose water. Using a small paintbrush, ice the tops
of the cookies and scatter the chopped almonds over them.
Return the cookies to the oven, and dry the icing for 5 minutes.