If you’re familiar with The Gingerbread Man story, you would know how the gingerbread man, not wanting to be eaten, leapt out of the oven and ran away from many predators until Mr Fox ate him up. What a horrific ending for a children’s tale! On a more horrific note, before refrigeration was available, aromatic gingerbread was crumbled and added to recipes to mask the odors of rotting meat! So why is gingerbread such an iconic Christmas item? Maybe because ginger is a nice warming spice for a wintery Xmas? Or maybe because they make impressive gifts? After all, Queen Elizabeth I knocked the socks off visiting dignitaries when she presented each one with a gingerbread man resembling their likeness! Either way, today’s recipe for gingerbread man was inspired by the ten lords-a-leaping. Get it?
(Adapted from Sarah Labensky’s On Baking)
120g unsalted butter, room temperature
120g brown sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1. Cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add molasses and egg, scrape down bowl and beat till well combined.
2. Add remaining ingredients to butter mixture until just blended.
3. Refrigerate dough overnight.
4. On a floured work surface, roll out dough to a thickness of 2-3mm. Cut cookies with cookie cutter and transfer onto parchment-lined baking tray.
5. Bake at 325 F for aproximately 8-10 minutes, until cookies are brown on the edges.
6. Decorate with royal icing (see below).
1 egg white
180g icing sugar, sifted
Food coloring (optional)
1. Whisk egg white until frothy.
2. Stir in sifted icing sugar until a smooth paste is formed. If using, stir in a drop of food coloring at a time until desired color is achieveswzxzc
If you missed out on past recipes in the 12 days of Xmas recipes series…
Ninth Day of Xmas: Rum & Raisin Semi-freddo
Eighth Day of Xmas: Pumpkin Panna Cotta
Seventh Day of Xmas: Profiteroles
Sixth Day of Xmas: Pavlova
Fifth Day of Xmas: Cardamom Rings
Fourth Day of Xmas: Cheesy Cauliflower Gratin
Third Day of Xmas: Creamy Chicken Pie
Second Day of Xmas: Turtle Bars
First Day of Xmas: Rustic Pear Galette