In a large bowl, cream shortening and sugar until light and fluffy, 5-7 minutes. Beat in egg and vanilla. Stir in sour cream. Combine flour, baking soda and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well. Divide dough into three balls; cover and refrigerate 3 hours or until easy to handle.
Preheat oven to 375°. Remove one portion of dough from the refrigerator at a time. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to 1/8-in. thickness. Cut with a floured 4-in. penguin cookie cutter. Place 1 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets.
Bake 6-8 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Remove to wire racks to cool.
For frosting, in a small bowl, combine confectioners' sugar, water and meringue powder; beat on low speed just until combined. Beat on high 4 minutes or until soft peaks form. Cover frosting with damp paper towels or plastic wrap between uses.
Set aside half of frosting. Tint half of the remaining frosting black. Divide remaining frosting into thirds; tint one orange, one red and the remaining third green.
Working quickly with the black frosting, pipe outlines of the penguins' bodies; fill in with thinned black frosting. Let dry at room temperature for several hours or until firm. Fill in centers of penguins with thinned white frosting; let dry until firm.
Add eyes with the black and white frostings or edible ink pen, orange beaks and feet and red and green scarves. Let stand until set. Add white and contrasting colored polka dots on the scarves. Let stand until set. Store in an airtight container.
Editor's Note: Meringue powder is available from Wilton Industries. Call 1-800/794-5866 or visit www.wilton.com. The penguin cookie cutter is from Copper Gifts. Call 1-620/421-0654 or visit www.coppergifts.com.
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