~ Blog-ember Day 16~
For me, gingerbread is a food that is strictly seasonal- much like hot-cross buns. It feels wrong to eat them when it is not right season, which is very weird I understand hahaa! I don’t know if I have ever made gingerbread from scratch before- the best kind is slightly chewy and thick. I had in mind that it would be a very long process but this one was surprisingly easy! So, as always I did my research on recipes which ended with this mix of them all..let me tell you now it is GOOD.
If you love a festive gingerbread treat this recipe should also work great for you! Again, this is a mix of a few different recipes online. Please let me know if you try this recipe and or links to your own below!
So, let’s get baking!
You Will Need:
– 400 g plain flour – 130 g dark brown sugar – 2 tbsp milk – 6 oz unsalted butter (cubed & softened) – 1 tbsp ground cinnamon – 1 tbsp ground ginger – 1 tsp ground cloves – 1/2 tsp salt – 3/4 tsp baking soda – 130 g molasses sugar – 1/2 cup water
Firstly you need to make to molasses paste;
You can buy it already in ‘paste’ form but I couldn’t find it in my local stores, if you can go ahead and use that instead (250g). After looking online it is just as easy to make it yourself- it does take about 30 mins but it’s worth it! Don’t rush this step as the mixture can easily burn.
1. Add the water and the molasses sugar to a small pan and heat and a low-medium heat. Keep gently stirring the mixture to avoid burning the sugar. This will take a good 20 mins, there won’t be much change but be patient!
2. After about 20-25 min the mixture should start to boil, at this point keep stirring all the time. As it boils you should feel the mixture start to thicken- again slowly but it will work!
3. The mixture, after around 30 mins should be thick, spread like in consistency. Make sure it is not watery.
4. Remove from the heat once thickened and keep stirring for 5 mins as it cools. After 5 mins pour into a smaller bowl to continue to cool- again stirring frequently. It should cool down within 20 mins. Which is perfect time for the rest of the recipe!
1. Add all the dry ingredients to a mixer and pulse until combined.
2. Add the softened butter in pieces until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. You may need to help the butter combined with a fork.
3. Whilst mixing, gradually add in the milk and the molasses paste- continue until the dough forms.
4. Once the dough has formed, remove and place on a floured surface.
3. Section the dough into 2-3 chunks, roll out between 2 sheets of parchment to fit a baking tray- I used 3. Once you have rolled out your dough between the sheets, place stacked onto a tray and pop in the freezer for 20-30 mins. This keeps the shape of your shapes when baking.
4. Once chilled, remove the dough and cut in your desired shapes. Place (spaced) onto a lined tray and bake for 7 mins at 170′ Fan. Change the time depending on how soft or crunchy you desire- 7 mins was just right!
5. Once baked, allow to cool of the tray for a few mins then place on a wire rack to cool. Continue until all dough is used, keep in the fridge between baking.
Of course you can leave these cookies bare or just with a dusting of icing sugar, I thought I would share the two Christmas Tree decorations I attempted!
1. Single Christmas Trees: Once baked in the tree shape and cool, take some
ready-made pipping white icing and zig-zag from top to bottom. Finish with a dusting of icing sugar.
For an extra touch, bake some tiny stars, ice white and add to the top. Simple silver balls also add a touch of sparkle!
2. 3D Christmas Tree: You can also find the huge versions of these in John Lewis at Christmas. These are a much smaller version but so easy and effective. For this you will need a set up 5-6 star cutter, bake 3-4 sets depending on how big you want them. Once baked and cooled stack all the sizes together in order ready to assemble- this makes things A LOT easier!
Make a little royal icing paste (this dries hard) to stick everything together. Begin to stack the sets of shapes, at different angles, securing with a little royal icing in-between each. For the top star use of blob of the white icing paste. Off the ends of some of the stars make ‘icicles’ and add in some of the silver pearls- of course decorate however you like!
So there you have my collection of gingerbread recipes, an easy and very scrumptious festive treat! Let me know your recipes below!
Thank You So Much For Reading 🙂
~ B ~