After my deep frustation of not finding the perfect-sized gingerbread cookie cutter, I was this close of not making gingerbread cookies at all. But Christmas is so much more cheery and enjoyable with gingerbread cookies. They also make up for a great decoration: mine have been sitting so prettily on the kitchen table, but you could make ornaments out of them as well.
I found a great gingerbread cookie recipe without molasses that I wanted to try, and made thick, soft cookies. I used Royal Icing for decoration but I'm not one for spending hours decorating cookies. So I just smeared it on the baked cookie and let the excess icing drip off. Rating 4.5 out of 5.
Gingerbread Cookies Without Molasses:
Ingredients: Makes 2 dozen
- 5 ½ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
- 4 teaspoons ground ginger
- 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 2 sticks (16 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup honey
- ½ cup maple syrup
- Whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, and spices in a medium bowl.
- Beat butter and sugar with a mixer on medium-high speed until fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in honey and maple syrup. Reduce speed to low. Gradually add flour mixture, and beat until just combined. Divide dough into 3 portions, and wrap each in plastic. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. On a generously floured piece of parchment, roll dough to a scant ¼ inch thick. Brush off excess flour. Slide dough and parchment onto a baking sheet, and freeze for 15 minutes.
- Cut out desired shapes. Transfer to parchment-lined baking sheets, and freeze for 15 minutes.
- Bake cookies for 6 minutes. Remove sheets from oven, and tap them firmly on counter to flatten cookies. Return to oven, rotating sheets, and bake until crisp but not darkened, 6 to 8 minutes more. Let cool on sheets on wire racks.
- Spoon icing into a pastry bag fitted with a very small plain round tip (such as Ateco #0 or #1). Pipe designs on cookies. Let cookies stand at room temperature until set, at least 2 hours (preferably overnight). Cookies can be stored between layers of parchment in airtight containers for up to 1 week.
Royal Icing recipe here.
The Christmas cards I've send out this year:
A cup of hot chocolate and a gingerbread cookie, I thought it was so me!