My lovely friend Suzie is back today to share a fun Christmas advent craft. I think the girls and I are definitely going to have to give this one a go!! …
I love the tradition of baking and decorating a gingerbread house with my kiddies at Christmas time (we always have so much fun). So when I saw the idea of an advent calendar made out of gingerbread cookies I knew it would definitely be added to the Christmas activity ‘must do’ list in our house! Plus I had seen the most adorable gingerbread men cookie cutter set at the $2 shop, which I thought would be perfect to use for this little project. Wouldn’t this make a brilliant little Christmas gift for someone special?
THIS RECIPE MAKES ABOUT 27 COOKIES (depending on size – but of course you only need 25) This is also a great recipe for making gingerbread houses.
- 3 cups flour
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp baking powder
- 100g butter
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground cloves
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 egg
- ½ cup golden syrup
TO MAKE THE DOUGH
Set oven to 180C (non fan) bake.
Cream butter, sugar and spices until light and fluffy.
Add the egg gradually until all is combined and creamy.
Sift baking powder, baking soda and flour together then add to creamed mix alternating with the syrup.
Mix until combined and then wrap and chill.
TIP: To make a coloured gingerbread man (like the red 25th Christmas day one shown) I just kneaded a little colour gel in the dough and baked as normal.
TO MAKE THE COOKIES
Knead the dough on a floured work surface then roll it out to approximately 5mm thick.
Cut into desired shapes and place on lined cookie tray.
Chill for 15 minutes before baking in oven.
Bake for 10 minutes.
Royal Icing Recipe
- Approximately 1/4 cup water
- 4 cups icing sugar sifted
- 2 tablespoons Colour Flow Mix powder
Add half the water to the icing sugar and powder and start mixing…slowly adding in the remainder of the water as you mix.
Continue on med-high for approximately 5 minutes until it starts to look glossy.
TIP: Be careful not to add too much water. A great test that you’ve reached the right consistency is; dip a spoon in your icing and after you pull it out you want the crest of icing to disappear into a smooth surface after about 10-15 seconds.
Keep the icing covered (I use a damp paper towel) as it can quickly form a crusty surface as it starts to harden.
This icing is also great for making little flowers and other decorations to use at a later date. All you need to do is make a thicker mixture of icing suitable for piping and, once hardened, store your pieces in an airtight container.
Once you’ve decorated your gingerbread men leave them out for about an hour or two so the icing has time to harden. Then thread either twine or jute through the hole (I used both) so you have something to hang them by. I strung mine up on a piece of driftwood but you can use just about anything. You can even wait and make them closer to Christmas to hang on your tree (high enough of course from little fingers). And if you’re after some lovely bits for packaging up your cookies as a gift, we have lots of Christmas goodies available at Little Ink. These are a few of the pieces I used to wrap mine up. Enjoy!