Tag Archives: gingerbread

Gingerbread Biscuits

Gingerbread Biscuits

Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without gingerbread!  Now, prior to this year I have always made and endured gingerbread biscuits but only because it’s Christmas and that’s just what you do!  Not this year, oh no!  I have finally found a gingerbread recipe that I actually enjoy!  These biscuits are crisp enough to keep their structure when hung on a tree, or built into 3D constructions but chewy enough that you don’t feel in danger of cracking a tooth on them unlike some of the recipes I’ve tried over the years.  They are incredibly moreish and have just the right level of spice and interest for me without being so strong that you can’t accidentally eat half a dozen in 5 minutes flat!

Gingerbread DoughGingerbread Snowmen

Makes ~30 of different sizes, depends on your cutter!

100g butter
175 dark muscovado sugar
85g golden syrup
pinch of salt
350g plain flour
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tbsp ground ginger
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp mixed spice
1 egg

– Melt the butter, sugar, syrup and salt in a saucepan and mix until all combined.
– Set aside to cool while you weigh the other ingredients.
– Put the flour, bicarb and spices in a large mixing bowl.
– Add the warm melted butter/sugar/syrup and give a little mix.
– Add the egg, continue to mix until it forms a soft batter.  Don’t worry, it will be much squishier than you think it should be.
– Put it in the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes.
– Heat the oven to gas mark 6 and prepare 2 baking trays with lining paper.
– On a lightly floured worksurface roll out the dough to about 5mm for larger cookies or the thickness of a £1 coin for smaller .  I have a small worksurface so I work with half the dough at a time and keep the rest in the fridge.
– Cut out your biscuits and carefully lift onto the trays, leaving plenty of space for them to spread a little.  They don’t loose their shape but they will puff out a bit.
– Bake your cookies for 5-10 minutes.  The larger the biscuits are the longer they will take, the smaller they are the quicker they’ll bake.  Small ones will probably take about 7 minutes, larger ones 10-12 minutes but keep checking.  You want the biscuit to be deep brown, but not yet catching and darkening on the edges.  Black is too far!
– If you want to put holes in for hanging on trees or making into 3D structures, cut these immediately upon leaving the oven while the dough is still hot.
– Leave on the tray to firm up for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool, continue to repeat with the rest of the dough until it’s all gone.

 

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Filed under Christmas, Cookies and Biscuits, Easy

Bonfire Cupcakes

Bonfire Cupcake

 

Bonfire Night is nearly upon us!  We had our village bonfire last light (and it was a good one, especially the plastic marquee nearly catching fire from the sparks!) with some spectacular fireworks too!  I love Bonfire Night, its a weirdly primal thing, standing around a huge fire in a field with your village eating hot dogs and jacket potatoes… well, may be not so primal there!

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From about the beginning of October I get obsessed with Gingerbread.  I just love it!  It’s such a unique taste and texture, my body just craves it around this time of year.  Little did I know there was a way to improve it!

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Gingerbread cupcakes!!! The gingerbread recipe transfers so well to cupcake form, it doesn’t get too dry or heavy, stays nice and lights and chewy!  Add to that speculoos buttercream and you have one of  the tastiest things I’ve eaten all year!

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Makes 12

2 cups self raising flour
1 cup light soft brown sugar
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 cup milk
1 tbsp butter/lard/Trex
2 tbsp golden syrup (One BIG dollop on a spoon works)

200g unsalted butter, softened
400g icing sugar
2 tbsp milk
5 tbsp speculoos paste (Could go with 1 tsp cinnamon if you can’t get hold of the paste but that stuff is delicious and well worth the effort!)
red food colouring paste
red edible glitter
chocolate sprinkles and shards (Matchmakers are perfect here but I didn’t have any!)

– Heat the oven to gas mark 3 / 200C and prepare a muffin tin with paper liners (I like the brown ones best here.)
– Measure out the flour, sugar, ginger and bicarb into a large mixing bowl.
– Measure out the milk, butter and golden syrup into a small saucepan.
– Bring the milk just to the boil, melting all of the butter and syrup.
– Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and give a good mix around until you have a smooth, spongy batter.
– Divide equally between the cupcake cases.  You want to be filling them just over about halfway up.
– Bake for 20 minutes.
– Put the butter, icing sugar, milk and speculoos paste in a medium mixing bowl and beat well until a smooth buttercream is formed.

Now there are several ways to do this next bit:
– Paint a stripe of red food colouring paste up the inside of a piping bag in several lines.  Fill the bag as normal and pipe your icing onto your cupcakes.
– Add a bit of red colouring to your bowl and marble it so you have swirls of red.
– Use one of those two colour piping bags from Lakeland… this is what I did and I will never do it again, it was a nightmare!
I suggest the first method as probably the most reliable.

– Ice your cupcakes using a large star tip and then sprinkle the top with red edible glitter.  Get them nice and high, there’s plenty of buttercream here so don’t be afraid!
– Add small chocolate sprinkles and larger shards of broken chocolate as logs.
– Feast!

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Filed under Cupcakes and Muffins, Easy, Halloween