When December hits I’m usualy too distracted by my birthday to instantly be swept up in the Christmas vibe. That’s why I always set to the kitchen to whip up gingerbread as gifts for family to get my jingle bells’ jingling. These cookies are full of spice and a little extra nice (whiskey and cocoa) to warm the cold, snowy nights or create the illusion in Australia.
This dough is very soft and results in crumbly, melt in your mouth cookies. If you want to make a gingerbread house or other construction this is not the recipe for you as it will fall apart very easily.
3/4 cup of Butter
2/3 cup Brown sugar (packed)
2/3 cup Golden syrup
2 tbsp Ginger
2 tbsp Nutmeg
2 tbsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Vanilla essence
1 tbsp Whiskey
1/4 cup Cocoa powder
3 2/3 cups Flour
1 1/2 tsp Baking powder
2 Egg whites
3 cups Pure icing sugar
Any thing edible to decorate with!
1. Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
Cream the butter in a mixer with the whisk attachment until pale and fluffy. Add the brown sugar and spices and continue to beat.
2. Gradually add the egg, vanilla, golden syrup and whisky to the butter mix and beat until well combined.
3. Sift flour, baking powder and cocoa together. Fold this into the butter and give it a jolly good mixing until well combined. The dough at this point will be very soft but resist the urge to add extra flour. Turn onto a sheet of plastic wrap and shape into a disk. Wrap it and fridge it for 30 min.
4. Now the dough should be harder and easier to work with. Flour your work surface and the top of the dough, roll to 7mm thick. You can make it thicker but adjust cooking time accordingly. Cut out with your favourite festive cookie cutters and place on a non-stick tray (Don’t use baking paper as the cookies may stick. Last Christmas I had the fun job of peeling stuck paper off the back of fifty gingerbread men).
5. Bake for 12 min or until edges begin to brown. Cookies will still be soft when they come out of the oven but will harden while cooling.
6. For the Icing: beat egg whites on high with the whisk attachment in an electric mixer until thick. Gradually add the icing sugar and continue beating until the icing is stiff and forms defined peaks when the whisk is removed.
To make icing runny to cover cookies add liquid food colouring or a few drops of lemon juice. To thicken add more icing sugar. Keep icing covered with plastic wrap while working to stop it from drying out.
7. Once cookies are completely cooled decorate with the icing and any other fun things you can think of (Lollies, sprinkles, a pony) Allow icing to completely set before wrapping them up as gifts.
Merry Christmas poppets!