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Gingerbread Cookies Display Different Facial Expressions
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La Belle Cuisine
Food and Wine Holiday Cookbook
Food & Wine Books, Editorial Director: Judith Hill,
1996, American Express
“One of America’s favorites, these
gingerbread cookies are the old-fashioned
kind that you roll out into
gingerbread people, or any shape you like. A hint of cardamom makes this version
extra special. The cookies are delicious plain, but especially fun and festive
decorated with icing, seeds, nuts, or dried fruit.”
Makes about 2
3 cups flour
2 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 1/4 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup molasses
1/4 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons water
1 large egg, at room temperature
Royal Icing (recipe follows), optional
Nuts, seeds, raisins, or other dried fruits, for decoration (optional)
1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, ginger, cinnamon,
cardamom, nutmeg, cloves, baking soda, and salt.
2. In a small saucepan, heat the molasses over low heat until bubbles begin
form around the edge. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter,
at a time, until it is completely incorporated. Scrape the
mixture into a large
bowl. Stir in the sugar and water. Stir in the egg
3. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour in the molasses
mixture. Gradually stir in the flour mixture until blended. Turn the
onto a floured surface. Knead gently until smooth. Pat
into a 6-inch
and chill overnight.
4. Heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter two baking sheets. On a lightly
floured surface, roll half the dough to 1/8 inch thick. (Keep the rest
until ready to use.) Using cookie cutters, stamp out cookies.
Put them about 1/2
inch apart on the prepared baking sheets. If you
like, brush the cookies with
icing. Or, brush them with a little water
and press on the nuts, seeds, and/or
5. Bake the cookies in the middle of the oven until firm and slightly
about 10 minutes. Transfer them to a rack to cool and
then decorate with icing,
if you like.
~ Linda Merinoff
It Ahead: You can make the dough up to 3 days ahead. Once
keep well in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
“This easy-to-make icing hardens as it dried, so it’s ideal for decorating.
can brush or pipe it onto the cookies before or after baking.”
Makes about 1
1 large egg white, at room temperature
1 3/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons confectioners’
sugar, sifted, more if needed
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
Food coloring (optional)
1. In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients except the food
Using a hand-held electric mixer, beat the mixture at high speed until
fluffy, thick, and shiny, about 3 minutes.
2. Divide the icing into small amounts and adjust the consistency as
thin for painting, beat in water; for a stiffer icing that
holds its shape
piped, add more confectioners’ sugar. Tint
the icing with the food coloring.
Cover tightly to keep the icing
from drying out.
~ Peggy Cullen
It Ahead: You can make the icing and refrigerate it in an
for up to 1 week.
Cookie Decorating Tips
You can pipe an outline around a baked or unbaked cookie and then fill
brushing with thinned icing of a different color.
To make hair for gingerbread people or animals, knead a little extra flour
a bit of dough and then squeeze the dough through a garlic press.
Paint or pipe icing onto baked or unbaked cookies. Before the icing dries,
sprinkle it with tinted sugar, sugar glitter, or dragées, or dust with
For hanging ornaments, pierce unbaked cookies with the blunt end of
skewer, or with a chopstick. Repierce after baking, while
For a ribbon border, make holes around the edge of an unbaked cookie
skewer or chopstick. Pierce again after baking. Weave a ribbon
~ Peggy Cullen
Dutch Spice Cookies (Speculaas)
How to Make
Gingerbread (Laurie Colwin)
Index - Cookie Recipe Archives
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