Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Gingerbread Cookies


You'd think with all the food that appears on this blog that there would be clouds of flour and aromas of cinnamon wafting throughout my home. But, like everyone, I'm scrambling to find the balance of working, blogging and family life.

One year, I made over 500 cookies before Christmas for friends and family. This year, I was able to pull off a batch of gingerbread and shortbread!

My girls love decorating gingerbread cookies. So one night we spread out all the sprinkles I've collected and tinted some white icing with food coloring. We have cute gingerbread men, gingerbread Dr. Seuss characters, ghoulish ones with missing legs, and ones with more icing and sprinkles than cookie for the sweet tooth in the bunch (my youngest).

So, though our cookie jar isn't overflowing, we have a table that's still sprinkled with dragees, sugar and dried icing. But best of all we have sweet memories.

Recipe for Gingerbread

From Epicurious

Makes about 50 regular-sized gingerbread cookies

6 cups (about) flour
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1½ teaspoons ground cloves
¾ teaspoon salt
11 tablespoon (1 stick plus 3 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
2/3 cup solid vegetable shortening
1 cup sugar
1 cup mild-flavored (light) molasses
1½ teaspoons grated lemon peel
1 large egg
¼ cup buttermilk
2 teaspoons water
1 teaspoon soda

Whisk 5¼ cups flour, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and salt in a bowl.

Using a stand mixer, blend the butter and shortening. Add sugar, molasses, and lemon peel and beat until smooth. Beat in egg and buttermilk.

Blend 2 teaspoons water with soda. Beat into butter mixture. In two additions, beat in flour mixture. Add more flour, ¼ cup at a time, until the dough feels slightly firm.

Divide dough into three equal disks. Wrap them and chill until firm enough to roll, at least 2 hours. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep refrigerated. Soften slightly before rolling out.)

Roll out one disk of dough at a time, between sheets of waxed paper.

Either cut the dough using cookie cutters (or another shape) or press the dough into a heat-resistant shot glass or silicon shot glasses. (See blog post for Gingerbread Cookie Cups.) Chill the dough again before baking. (Cutout cookies can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and keep chilled.)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes, turning the pan halfway through the baking time.

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Head on over to Natalie MacLean's blog to check out my simple but tasty holiday brunch idea: Salmon Dill Crepe Recipe Paired with Oyster Bay Sauvignon Blanc, New Zealand



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Here are some other delicious Christmas treats:


Linzer Sablés

Rice Pudding
(which is what we like to have for dessert at Christmas)

Shortbread

Spiced White Chocolate Cappuccino
 
Happy Holidays!


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