Hope you're all well and staying warm. I'm so not a fan of this time of year. I take no joy whatsoever from cold, rainy days, or chilly winds that can feel like they could cut me in two, just ick! I'm a Summer baby! I need sunshine, I need to feel the warmth on my skin, to wake up to the sun streaming through the windows and know I can hang out laundry :)
What can I do though, we're stuck in December and other than to hibernate like a bear till Spring (I have toyed with the idea on many an occasion) the only thing I can do is to make the best of it. So, last night, partly to make myself feel at least a little happier and partly just because they are so yummy I thought I'd make some delicious gingerbread cookies :)
They only take 8-10 minutes to bake too, so once they're in the oven you can make a lovely cuppa and by the time that's done they're ready to come out of the oven. Shall we make some cookies?
Ingredients:85g brown sugar
125g unsalted butter
1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
3 teaspoons of ground ginger
375g plain flour (sifted)
175 ml golden syrup
Directions:1. Pre-heat your oven to 180c
2. Into your mixer (or large mixing bowl) place your brown sugar and butter. Beat together until combined and creamy.
3. Once your sugar and butter are well mixed, add to the bowl (or your mixer which if, like me, you have painful, arthritic wrists is definitely the way to go) your plain flour (sifted), ginger, bicarbonate of soda and your golden syrup. Mix until very well combined.
4. Turn out your gingerbread dough and place it into a tub or sandwich bag and into the fridge for 15-20 minutes, more if you can. This lets your dough "rest" as the more it's handled the stickier it becomes. The more chilled it is, the easier it is to roll out and work with.
5. Once chilled, cut two pieces of greaseproof paper and place your dough between the greaseproof paper sheets and roll out. The less you can manage to touch the dough the better, since the heat from your hands will make it "greasy." Use your favourite cookie cutters and have fun cutting out your cookies. If your dough should start to become "sticky" pop it back into the fridge to chill again.
6. Bake your cookies for 8-10 minutes until a lovely golden brown. Remove (carefully) from the oven and gently remove and place onto a wire cooling rack. I use a silicone spatula to do this as the cookies are still very fragile when first removed from the oven.
7. I like to sift a little icing sugar over the top of my cookies but they're still delicious without it :)
8. Sit down, put your feet up with a lovely cuppa and enjoy!
So honeys, as you can see, it's so easy to make our lovely ginger dough, and once that's done, the fun begins :) what do we do with it? Well last night I made some gingerbread men and even some "high five" cookies :)
Then I made this Christmas Wreath cookie, well, it is nearly December after all :) I'm quite pleased at how it turned out :)
To make the wreath cookie, I used a larger round cookie cutter to cut the main cookie and then used the smallest round cutter in the set to cut out the middle. I then pushed in the little sugar roses (normally used to decorate the tops of cupcakes) around the edge. Lastly before placing it into the oven to bake, I made a little whole at the top edge, just big enough to later thread through a ribbon as I have in the photo. This then allows you to hang them from your Christmas tree :)
Having had fun cutting out cookie shapes, my shoulders and spine started to ache and I placed my gingerbread dough back into the fridge while I went away and got my pain meds. It's so not fun being a spoonie at times. The rest of my cookie dough was used to make these assorted plain round cookies. Maybe not so creative but just as delicious :-)
Another tip, I prefer my cookies to be "chewy" where hubby prefers his to be thinner and crispier and this can be easily achieved by adjusting the thickness of your cookies. The thicker the cookie the chewier it will be, the thinner the crispier.
So that's it honeys, I hope that you try some of these delicious cookies, they're perfect for cheering up a dull day, for gifting when visiting over the holidays or just to impress guests by having homemade cookies when offering a coffee :-)
Stay warm dear ones, till next time, sending heaps of hugs xxx