Gingerbread Men

By Monday, December 24, 2012

It's the season to be joyous! Falalalala...

December is also the time I find myself "pigging" out with my loved ones. To me, that's one of life's simple pleasure - It just means we meet, eat and catch up on each others life.

Celebrating Xmas with my closer JC classmates is an annual event I look forward to. Over the years, contacts with each other is reduced as we move on to different life stages. But Xmas is the time we re-connect again. It's amazing how we can share the same jokes about our classmates and teachers over again, and never get tired of hearing it. It must be the shared experiences we had gone through that bonds us together.

This time, hubby persuaded me to get our first Xmas tree. We chose a real pine tree from Ikea, which we transported back on our own. And we love the smell of the tree in the house. So fresh and natural! Only downside is it keeps shredding pines, especially when my mischievous cat tries to play with the decorative balls.

There she is... checking the tree out!

We managed to put it all together. Ah.. my beautiful tree! And it brings warmth to my heart as I sat on my sofa looking at it, seeping my favourite drink. I must say it's therapeutic in some way, seeing the lights lit up the tree.

All dressed up and looking good!

To immerse self into the festive moods, I decided to bake. (How can I miss this chance to use my precious mixer and oven? *grin*) It's non other than the classic gingerbread men! As usual, the recipe I chose caused it to ballooned up, and it went from slim to... FAT.

Designed by me

Nonetheless, it still looked cute right? Even hubby tried his hands at designing one...

Designed by him

But he gave up after two, as my royal icing was a bit stiff for him to handle.

I finally realized it's the baking soda that causes it to change its shape. I tried another recipe and the shape holds well. But taste wise, the one with more baking soda tastes better. The rising agent causes the cookie to be more chewy and fluffy (meaning not so dry). But if we are wanting to use it for decorations, a drier cookie would be better. Ultimately, it's your choice. Think I'll stick to my "fat fat" cookie recipe for now. I just like the taste better as it calls for less molasses, and more butter.

Recipe (taken from allrecipes)
- makes about 24 large gingerbread men

A: 375g plain flour
     2 tsp baking soda
     (will reduce it to 1/4 tsp.. don't want the shape to change too much
     2 tsp ground cinnamon
     1 tsp ground ginger
     1/2 tsp clove (which i omitted)
     1/2 tsp salt

B:  225g butter, softened
      220g brown sugar
     1 egg
     30ml molassess (abt 2 tbsp) 

  • Mix everything in A together. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat together the butter and sugar till light and fluffy. Beat in the egg yolk, then the molasses. On low speed, gradually beat in the flour mixture (A) just until mixed. 
  • When everything is well combined, divide the dough into 3 parts, and roll each into a ball. Place each ball between 2 sheets of parchment paper / wax paper. Using your palm, flatten the ball into a disk, and roll out into a 1/4 inch thick. Chill dough for at least 30 mins, or until firm. 
  • Cut out cookies with cutters, using whichever shape you like, and transfer cookies to a baking tray (lined with parchment). Gather the scraps, reroll, chill and cut out more cookies.
  • Bake cookies at 190C, for 10-12 mins until the edges are faintly golden. Let cool on the baking tray for 1 min, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.
Can check out my previous posts on making cookies for tips on rolling and cutting into desired shapes.

While checking FB, I was reminded by my friend that Xmas is a time of giving. Not in terms of monetary items such as presents, but in terms of your time. When was the last time you called or met an old friend, or expressed your love and concern for your parents and siblings? Now is the time.

Wishing all a Merry Xmas filled with joy and meaningful time connecting with those whom are important to us!

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  1. good morning lala, thanks for your message back at my blog, like you too i really appreciate our friendship and communication with you. evil gingermen? your hubby very naughty! hehe.. Merry christmas to you and have a blessed new year 2013!