Nothing says Christmas more than the smell of gingerbread and cinnamon floating around your house while you’re doing something festive such as decorating the tree with baubles.
Gingerbread is a Christmas staple and if yours don’t get eaten straight away, they make an excellent tree decoration (be warned they won’t last long).
The biscuits are also a good staple for when unexpected guests turn up at your door because they can be frozen (for up to 3 months) and stored in the freezer for occasions such as this. If you’re not hugely experienced with icing, do not fear. You really can’t go wrong and whatever you do will look good (within reason!).
I’d advise going for one colour and trying the snowflake design for minimum fuss and maximum result but if you’re feeling creative then throw in a few other colours, silver balls, glitter or whatever you fancy.
If you are going to use your biscuits as tree decorations remember to cut a hole in the biscuit before you bake (a piping nozzle is great for this). And don’t be alarmed that the biscuits look a little soft when they come out of the oven, they will harden up while they cool.
How to make…
320g plain flour
180g dark brown sugar
3tsp ground ginger
2 tsp ground cinnamon
150g unsalted butter (soft)
1 egg (room temperature)
4tbsp golden syrup
500g icing sugar (any colours and extra decorations you want)
How to make…
Melt the butter, sugar and golden syrup in a hob until the sugar has dissolved and you are left with a glorious silky dark liquid, then set aside to cool.
Weigh out the dry ingredients and sieve into your mixer (or a large bowl if you’re mixing by hand). Pour the liquid mixture into the dry and stir everything until you’ve got a sticky dough (don’t panic if it looks too sticky).
Form the dough into a ball and cover in cling film, put into the fridge for an hour (or freezer for 20 minutes).
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4, line two baking trays with greaseproof paper and pick out your Christmas cutters. Get your dough out and use a rolling pin (or old wine bottle) to roll the dough until it’s about the width of a £1 coin.
Then cut the Christmas shapes out and place them onto the baking tray, make a hole in the biscuits if you’re using them for decorations, and then bake for 10 minutes. When cool get the biscuits out and put them on a cooling rack.
Now start to make your icing. You need quite a thick consistency so it doesn’t run off the biscuit but you also don’t want it to be too thick so you can’t pipe it on.
If you have piping bags they will make it easier (it’s easy to make your own with baking paper) and as soon as you’ve piped the icing on, throw on your silver balls if you’re using them.