I’ve been testing this recipe for years and now I can definitely share it with you and call it “the best (ever) gingerbread”. It’s everything a gingerbread cookie should be: Crunchy, flavourful and absolutely delicious. I’m not very proud of my piping skills (for those of you who are wondering – since you have seen my cakes – working with sugar-paste is a much easier task!), but I did take up the challenge and decorated some biscuits for a charity bazaar. I’m posting the photo to give you some ideas on how to decorate them. However, un-iced cookies are just as delicious (if not more), so go ahead bake a big batch and devour them over the holidays. This recipe makes excellent gingerbread houses since it keeps its shape after baking.
- 125 grams unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- ¼ cup golden syrup
- ¼ cup black treacle (or molasses)
- 1 large egg
- 3 cups flour
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp ground cloves
In a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the flat beater, cream the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add the golden syrup, black treacle or molasses. Beat until mixed. Add the egg and beat again.
Sift together the flour, salt, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon and cloves. Lower the speed of your mixer and add the flour mixture. Beat until mixture comes together.
Take mixture out of the mixing bowl and put on greaseproof paper. Make dough into a disk and flatten with your hands. Top dough with another piece of greaseproof paper. Roll dough to the desired thickness. I roll it 3-4 mm thick. If dough is too soft and difficult to handle, refrigerate it for a while before rolling.
Place rolled dough in the fridge as it is, between the two sheets of greaseproof paper. Leave for 2 hours or overnight. If you intend to leave it longer in the fridge, wrap with plastic wrap without removing the paper.
When ready to cut and bake, preheat oven to 175 C. Line several oven trays with greaseproof paper or silicon pad. Take gingerbread out of the fridge and remove the top greaseproof paper. Cut the shapes you want and place on the baking trays. Bake for 10 minutes. Gingerbread will be soft as soon as it comes out of the oven but it will harden as it cools. Cool on wire racks. Store in cookie boxes. It keeps for ever (almost).
Note: If you intend to bake giant cookies or large pieces of dough for a gingerbread house, first cut the cookie and then remove the excess dough from around the cookie. Don’t move the cookie as it might lose its shape. Just cut with a pair of scissors the greaseproof paper and transfer together with the cookie on a baking sheet.