STEP ONEHEAT oven to 375°F. Coat baking sheet with no-stick cooking spray. Beat cake mix and shortening in medium bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until coarse crumbs form, about 2 minutes. Blend in water, egg and almond extract on low speed until dough forms.
STEP TWOROLL dough on well floured surface to 1/8-inch thickness. Cut with floured cookie cutter into 2-1/2-inch circles. Use a 3/4-inch round canape cutter to cut and remove a small circle of dough from half of the dough circles. Place 1 inch apart on prepared baking sheet. Bake 7 to 9 minutes or until edges are light golden brown. Cool 1 minute. Remove to wire rack to cool completely.
STEP THREESPRINKLE powdered sugar on top side of all cookies with cut-out centers. Spread about 1 teaspoon preserves evenly on bottom side of all whole round cookies. Top with a cut-out cookie to form sandwiches.
STEP FOURPLACE frosting in decorating bag fitted with medium star tip. Pipe a small star of frosting on top of each cookie.