Christmas Gift Ideas – Gingerbread Cookies

5 Dec , 2013 Food

Christmas Gift Ideas – Gingerbread Cookies

Every year at my workplace Christmas Party I’d bake something as a gift. A few years ago it was Vanilla Cupcakes with Butter Cream and decorated with green icing, mini MnMs and a candy cane. The year after it was Vanilla Cupcakes with Raspberry Coulis and Cream Cheese Frosting. Last year it was a Spiced Cake Pop Parcel wrapped in Marshmellow Fondant.

This year, it is Gingerbread Cookies.

This is a great gift idea for those who want to give something special and made with love. I’ve used this recipe for Gingerbread cookies and it’s so delicious! I got this one from my favourite baking YouTube sensation – Yoyomax12!

I made some last year for my boyfriend’s parents (yes literally for brownie points)! They not only taste great after you bake them, they actually smell great as a cookie dough. (and no I didn’t eat any at the dough stage).

Anyway, here it is. It makes roughly 30 x 10cm gingerbread men cut out shapes, I’m sure you could get 50 cookies if you cut smaller shapes.

To decorate, whip up a batch of Royal Icing and dye in the Christmas colours or any colours you like.

I’m going to make some of these this year and pop them in plastic bags and tie a festive green ribbon on them for some colour. Keep scrolling to see the result!

Happy Baking!

The Recipe:

Gingerbread Dough Recipe: 
1 cup shortening (copha in Australia)
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 1/4 cups molasses (Treacle if you can’t find molasses at Coles)
6 1/4 cups all purpose flour (Reserve the 1/4 cup for later)
2 tsp ginger
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1tsp ground cloves

Method: Cream together sugar and shortening, beat in eggs one at a time. Add molasses and blend well. In another bowl mix together flour, salt and spices. Blend dry ingredients a little at a time into the wet mixture until a dough forms. Using hands if necessary form a dough ball, divide into two equal portions. Wrap dough in plastic wrap or put into plastic bags and refrigerate for at least two hours.

Royal icing: 
(you will need 2 or 3 batches of this depending how much you use)
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup meringue powder (or pavlova powder)
4 2/3 cups icing (powdered) sugar

Beat water with meringue powder until foamy about 4 minutes. Beat in icing sugar one cup at a time, beat until very stiff peaks form when beaters are lifted about 4 minutes. Cover with damp towel to prevent drying out.

(I used the royal icing pre-mixed pack – just add 50ml water and tastes pretty good)

My Result

I followed the instructions above and made quite a number of these. I used 10 Christmas cookie cutters that I got from Aldi – a box set with a variety of cookie cutters for only $5! Bargain!

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I left them to cool down before I iced them and let that cool down before I packaged them. To pipe, a great tip is to first pipe the border of the pattern or around the shape, let that harden a little bit before “flooding” the rest of the section with a watered down version of the royal icing (water it down using a few drops of water until it’s almost like the consistency of the treacle).

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Progress – Started to flood the cookies and add in details like eyes and things.

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Christmas Tree, Snowmen, Red Stockings and Teddy Bear Gingerbread Cookies!

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My Favourite design – Red Stocking with mistletoe!

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The whole set: Christmas tree, snowman, teddy bear, star, Rudolph, mini gingerbread man, red stockings, candy cane and the pink bow that didn’t turn out well.

I tied this really cute green and white polka dotted ribbon I got at one of those Asian Variety Gift stores that sell pretty much everything and really cute too!

So here it is.

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If I was to do this again, I’d probably add in some golden syrup or maple syrup for a different taste next time.

In terms of icing, I’d water the icing down a little more than I did this time so that when I pipe the border, it would be smoother than this time.

Happy Baking!

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