Preheat oven to 375°.
Beat sugar and butter at medium speed of a mixer until well-blended (about 5 minutes). Add water; beat well. Combine the flour, cornstarch, cinnamon, and salt. Add to sugar mixture; beat until well-blended. Gently press dough into a 4-inch disk; wrap in plastic wrap. Freeze 30 minutes.
Remove plastic wrap. Roll to a 1/16-inch thickness on a lightly floured surface; cut with a 2-inch star cutter. Place the cookies on a baking sheet; top with almonds. Bake at 375° for 8 minutes or until cookies are crisp and edges are browned. Cool 30 seconds on pan. Remove from pan; cool on wire racks.