MAKE 

 WEDNESDAY 24 DECEMBER 2014

Christmas is only a sleep away and although we are just getting back onto our feet from our jet lag I couldn't let the opportunity to make some cookies go by. I cannot believe it... but this is the first time that I've made gingerbread dough where have I been hiding all these years, not only does it taste great but it fills the house with quite the aroma.... make sure you leave the house and come back in ahhhhh for the full effect!!!  I do have a small confession to make and that is that I really couldn't be bothered with the Xmas tree this year so instead of hauling out that big box from the back of the cupboard we have made an edible tree, filled only with gingerbread cookie ornaments and garland there is a sprinkling of fairy lights as well `and I have to say it's quite a nice sight I guess it's a case of less being more

There are so many recipes out there but I stuck with my girl Donna Hay's recipe I had all the ingredients in my cupboard. Let me add though I could easily swap out the all spice for cinnamon, but it's perfectly fine whatever you choose. Here is the recipe:  

BASIC GINGERBREAD COOKIE DOUGH 

  • 125g unsalted butter softened
  • 1/2 cup (90g) brown sugar 
  • 2/3 cup (230g) golden syrup 
  • 2 1/2 cups (375g) plain all purpose flour 
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate soda, sifted 
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger 
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice (or cinnamon)

Preheat oven to 160 degrees. Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat for 6- 8minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl until pale and creamy. Add the golden syrup, flour, bicarbonate soda, ginger, mixed spice and beat until the mixture just comes together to form a smooth dough. Bake for 10-12 minutes until just golden.

Little hands make better cookies and for a happy household, but beware of little fingers they tend to like raw cookie dough too.

If you want to make a garland or ornaments you need a hole to tie string through. I recommend piercing the cookies as soon as they come out of the oven they will be soft enough to make the hole and will harden when cooled, I used the tip of a thermometer. Once cool and hard tie the string through making either individual ornaments or using a longer line for garland. Garlands look great across your tree or hanging down from mirrors or windows .

Cookie wreaths are another great decor idea look great on doors.  They can be made by creating the shape out of raw cookie dough be sure to over lap the stars and pushing them into each other baking will then set them in place alternatively you can cook them individually and then use royal icing to glue them together. 

But you must be a good sport and leave at least one cookie for the big man ... Merry Xmas !!!!