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(Experiment 131) Gingerbread cookies

With my kids, it’s been a tradition to build a gingerbread house from Costco during the holidays. Unfortunately this year, perhaps due to Covid, I was not able to get my hands on one.Gingerbread houses are not meant to be eaten, they are much dryer in order to support the frame.

So instead I decided to make a gingerbread man. The consistency should be somewhat of a hard exterior but with a more chewy interior. It should not be hard as a rock, if it is, you either baked it too much or didn’t properly weigh the ingredients. In any case, don’t trash it, it’s perfectly edible. Some actually prefer those ( if that’s your case reduce molasse and butter in the recipe )

Fun and easy recipe to do with the kids during the holidays

You need

  • 50g salted butter
  • 1/2tsp baking soda
  • 215g all purpose flour
  • 95g molasse
  • 1/2tsp ground ginger*
  • 1/2tsp ground cinnamon*
  • 1/2tsp ground clove*
  • pinch salt
  • 1 egg
  • 60g brown sugar

**Notice I put 1/2tsp of each, feel free to modify to your taste. I personally add more ginger and cinnamon

Royal Icing**

  • 18g meringue powder
  • 59g water ( about 90F)
  • 226g sifted icing sugar
  • colouring gel

**Note you can buy them in tube already coloured, but where is the fun in that 😉

Instructions

  1. In a stand mixer cream the butter and slowly add the brown sugar. Next add all the spices, baking soda, egg and the molasse. When all combine you can add the flour. Mix until you can’t see flour left. Don’t overmix
  2. Put the dough in plastic film and refrigerate for 60 minutes, else it will be hard to roll down and will stick and break.
  3. Lightly flour your work surface and using a rolling pin, press it down to about 1/4″ thick and then use a cookie cutter to make your cookies. You can re-roll the leftover to cut some more cookies. If it’s too sticky put it back in the fridge and repeat.
  4. Bake at 350F for about 13 minutes.
  5. Remove from oven and put on a wire rack to cool. Do not decorate them until cooled off.
  6. For the icing, we will again use the stand mixer. Combine the meringue powder and the water and whisk on high until it resembles a meringue. Reduce speed to medium and add the icing sugar. Remember to scrape the side every now and then to ensure it’s all blended. Now the more you whip it the stiffer it will get. It really depends on your need. If you will pipe it, stop whisking when you are at a soft peak(best to flood a large area), for our need here we want a bit more stiff as we will decorate the cookie and want a bit more precision.
  7. Separate in different bowls and add your colour in and mix. Ideally use a piping bag or poor man’s solution is to use a ziploc bag.

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