Holiday Treat #8: Gingerbread Cookies!

It just wouldn’t be Christmas without Gingerbread Cookies!

These are one of my Mom’s favorites. I created a new recipe this year and will stick with this one from now on! It’s the perfect amount of spice/flavor, can be made soft of crisp (depending on how long you bake them), and the dough is not too difficult to work with.

Gingerbread Cookies!I made Gingerbread men, women, candy canes, stockings, Christmas trees, and snowmen! I think my favorites are the stockings…particularly that top part with all the icing 😀

My Mom used to get all of us kids involved decorating the cookies when we were growing up– it’s a fun thing to do as a family activity!

Gingerbread Cookies!

Ingredients:
Cookies:
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons butter
1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons shortening
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup molasses
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla

Icing:
1 1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/8 tsp cream of tarter
1 egg white

Directions:
1) In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, spices, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

2) In a different large bowl, beat the butter, shortening, and brown sugar until fluffy. Add in the egg, vanilla, and molasses and beat until combined. Add in the flour mixture and stir slowly until incorporated.

3) Split the dough into 3 pieces and place in a bowl (can be the same bowl you mixed in) Cover it with plastic wrap (or anything airtight) and put in the fridge for 2 hours or overnight.

4) Once the dough is chilled, preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove one of the 3 pieces of dough from the fridge. Roll it out on a very well floured surface, flipping the dough a few times to make sure it doesn’t stick to the surface. Roll to about 1/8 – 1/4 inch thickness (the thicker the dough, the thicker and softer your cookies).

5) Using cookie cutters of your choosing, cut the rolled-out dough into shapes. Using a metal spatula, move the shapes from the surface the were rolled out on onto a baking sheet.

6) Bake in preheated oven for 5-8 minutes, until edges start to look golden (the longer they bake, the crispier they will be). Let cool for a few minutes on the baking sheet; then transfer to a wire cooling rack.

7) Take the scraps of dough and form them back into a ball. Roll out again, cookie cutter out the shapes, and bake. Do this with all of the dough.

8) Once you are done with all of the cookies, make the icing!

9) Choose a small icing tip for the icing. Secure in pastry bag, or snip the corner of a plastic bad and use that as your pastry bag.

10) Combine the powdered sugar (sifted) egg white, and cream of tarter in a mixing bowl. Beat at high speed until the beater marks hold their shape in the mixture (this will take several minutes).

11) Spoon all of the icing into the piping bag. Then, deorate the cookies however you’d like! You can do funny decorations, traditional, nonsenseical…let your creativity guide you! I stuck with pretty traditional decorating this time.

Gingerbread Cookies!
Gingerbread Cookies!

Oh also, if you mess up with the icing, just spread it on the cookie to cover the whole thing! Tastes great and looks Christmasy still! 🙂

How do you decorate your gingerbread cookies?! Feel free to include pics!

Merry Christmas!

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