Even the smallest hands can help make these friendly little fellows made with a versatile gingerbread recipe
- 140g unsalted butter
- 100g dark muscovado sugar
- 3 tbsp golden syrup
- 350g plain flour
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 2 tsp ground ginger and 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)
- 2 balls stem ginger from a jar, chopped
- 50g icing sugar
- a few glacé cherries (we used undyed)
- 2 balls stem ginger
MethodLine 2 baking sheets with baking parchment. Melt butter, sugar and syrup in a pan. Mix flour, soda, spices and a pinch of salt in a bowl. Stir in the butter mix and chopped ginger to make a stiff-ish dough.
- 350g plain flour
- 1 tbsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 175g light muscovado sugar
- 100g butter, chopped
- 8 pieces of stem ginger, chopped (not too finely), plus thin slices, to decorate (optional)
- 1 large egg
- 4 tbsp golden syrup
- 200g bar dark chocolate, chopped
- Mix the flour, ground ginger, bicarbonate of soda, 1/2 tsp salt and sugar in a bowl, then rub in the butter to make crumbs. Stir in the chopped stem ginger.
- Beat together the egg and syrup, pour into the dry ingredients and stir, then knead with your hands to make a dough. Cut the dough in half and shape each piece into a thick sausage about 6cm across, making sure that the ends are straight. Wrap in cling film and chill for 20 mins. You can now freeze all or part of the dough for 2 months.
- Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 and line 2 baking sheets with baking parchment. Thickly slice each sausage into 12 and put the slices on the baking sheets, spacing them well apart and reshaping any, if necessary, to make rounds. Bake for 12 mins, then leave to cool for a few mins to harden before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of gently simmering water, making sure that the water isn’t touching the bottom of the bowl. Dip half of each cookie into the chocolate – you may need to spoon it over when you get to the final few. Decorate with a slice of ginger, if you like, and leave to set. Will keep for 1 week in an airtight container.
- 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup packed dark-brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup original molasses (such as Grandma's brand
- Royal Icing (recipe follows)
- Red Hot cinnamon candies for decorating
- 2 cups confectioners sugar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons powdered egg whites
- 3 tablespoons water
- In a medium-size bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in egg, then molasses. Stir flour mixture into butter mixture. Divide dough into 2 halves. Wrap; chill 2 hours.
- Heat oven to 350 degrees F. On a well-floured surface, roll half of dough to 1/8-inch thickness. Cut shapes with assorted-size gingerbread cookie cutters; transfer to ungreased baking sheets. Reroll scraps; cut. Repeat with rest of dough.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 13 minutes. Transfer cookies to racks to cool. Decorate with Royal Icing (recipe follows) and assorted candies. Makes 2-1/2 dozen assorted-size cookies.
- In a medium-size bowl, combine confectioners sugar, powdered egg whites and water. Beat on medium speed for 1 minute to blend, then increase speed to high and beat 5 minutes until thick and shiny. Transfer to a pastry bag fitted with a round tip, or a resealable plastic bag; snip small corner off bag. Pipe icing over cookies. Makes 1-1/2 cups icing.
- 1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 Egg
- 1/2 cup dark molasses (not light or blackstrap)
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- raisins, Chocolate Chips, and/or cinnamon candies for eyes and buttons
- Royal Icing (recipe follows) or prepared icing (such as Wilton)
- 4 cups confectioners sugar
- 3 tablespoons powdered egg whites
- 6 tablespoons water
- Red food coloring
- Beat shortening and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until well combined.
- Add baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon and cloves and beat until blended.
- Add the egg, molasses and white vinegar and beat until smooth, scraping down the side of the bowl once or twice as necessary.
- Add flour, 1 cup at a time, and stir until incorporated. Scrape the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap and press into a rough square. Wrap tightly and refrigerate for at least 3 hours and up to 3 days.
- Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Cut away one-fourth of the dough and rewrap the rest. With a floured rolling pin, roll out dough on a generously floured work surface to 1/4-inch thickness (dough is soft). Cut out gingerbread people with cookie cutter; place them on prepared baking sheet using a large metal spatula. Refrigerate scraps. Make eyes, nose, mouth and buttons by pressing raisins, chocolate chips and/or candies into cookies. If you wish to make ornaments, cut out a hole at the top of each cookie with a drinking straw.
- Bake cookies at 375 degrees F until firm, 8 to 10 minutes. Slide parchment sheet with cookies onto a wire rack and let the cookies cool completely. Repeat with remaining dough, then with chilled scraps, using fresh parchment paper each time. Decorate with icing as desired. Let dry completely. Keep at room temperature in an airtight container for 7 to 10 days.
- Beat confectioners sugar, powdered egg whites and water on high power for 5 minutes. Tint half of icing red; transfer to pastry bag fitted with writing tip.