I had me a little over the weekend and we had so much fun. We had a dance party, sang Christmas songs, made paper trees, and made cookies. It was a much more of a fun day then I had planned ans expected. (Christmas themed fun day.. uh, yeah!)
But the thing was I wasn't planning on making cookies. Wait scratch that, I was planning on cookies on Friday and asked her mom what kind of cookie we should make. And by Saturday, I had decided that I had way to much crap to do and didn't have time to make cookies. The little was going to spend the day with me doing errands and maybe a little work stuff. But that morning, when dropped off at 730 am, the first thing she said to me was "we are making gingerbread cookies today" in the most tiny little sleepy voice. Not a "are we gong to?", she was saying it as a fact. (her mother must have told her) So yeah, after that, I had to make the cookies. (I am not a monster) And because I now had to make cookies, I just said screw it to everything else I was going to do. I figured I might as well just roll with it and dance to jingle bell rock all day long.
About the cookies. These gingerbread cookies are everything I think a gingerbread should be. Sweet and spicy, dense and crisp, (but not hard) There is a slight snap, but not a tooth breaking snap and as you eat it, the middle of the cookie gets a little softer. They are the best paired with coffee or tea. Words that I have heard describe these cookies are; "fantastic" Oh my God" and "Fucking Amazing". So I am pretty sure that these are a winning cookie.
And sure, we could have made gingerbread people, but really, why make little weird shaped people when you can make a squirrel and a mouse. (step outside of the gingerbread box and make all kinds of shapes!) And although I love me a good neon colored sprinkle situation, I really got into using more natural looking things to decorate. But again, the shape and decor of your cookie is all up to you.
Note.. Awesome cookie cutters came from IKEA.
The stuff. We have flour, baking soda and powder,and some salt. For the spices we are using ginger (or course) cinnamon, and cracked pepper (for a little extra kick). Also have a bowl with brown sugar, molasses, oil, a splash of vanilla and two chia seed "eggs".
Whisk (or sift) together the flour with all the spices, the baking soda and powder and the salt.
And mix together the oil, chia eggs and vanilla with the molasses and brown sugar.
Look at that cutie... doing all the work.
Mix the dry into the wet like so.
Mix as much as you can with a wooden spoon and when you the spoon stops working, use your hands and form the dough into a large disk. Wrap it in wax paper (or plastic) and stick it in the fridge for a little while to rest ans evenly distribute all the moisture.
When you are ready for cookies, remove the dough from the fridge ans let it warm up for a few minutes. then take it and roll it out to about 1/2 inch. And pretty sure you know how to use a cookie cutter so cut some cookies.
A baking sheet of pre -baked creatures going into the oven.
After about 8-10 minutes, the cookies are a little poofy, a little more golden brown, and a lot of super good smelling lovely.
Now if you want, decorate your cookies! (you don't HAVE to, but you should)
I used white chocolate chips, tiny chocolate chips, dried cranberries and chopped almonds. And for the glaze, just powdered sugar and lemon juice. But use whatever you want.
And my favorite, the porcupine ! (I totally made this one)
Gingerbread Woodland Creatures
Makes about 2 dozen (depending in your cookie cutter sizes)
- 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 heaping teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 heaping teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 chia or flax eggs (2 tablespoons ground chia or flax seeds with 6 tablespoons warm water)
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup molasses
- 1/2 cup neutral flavored oil (like veggie or canola)
- splash of vanilla extract
- Things to decorate with like chopped almonds, raisins, frosting, chocolate chips.. whatever you want
Grab yourself a big bowl and add in the sugar, molasses, oil, vanilla, and the chia eggs. Mix until combined. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour with the all the spices, baking soda and powder, and the salt. Dump dry into wet and mix with a wooden spoon until a dough form. When yu can no longer mix with spoon, use your hands and knead the dough into a large disk. Wrap in wax paper or plastic, ans stick in the fridge for at least and hour, or up to 3 days.
When you are ready to make the cookies, remove dough from fridge and let it sit and warm up a little bit so it;s not so stiff and much easier to roll out.
Preheat oven to 350
Working in one big batch or cutting dough half, roll the dough until it's about 1/2 inch thick. Take your cookie cutters of your preferred shape and cut as many out as you can. Place cookies onto a baking sheet and bake between 8-11 minutes or until the cookies have slightly rising and the cookies are just starting to brown. .
Note... Using a cookie cutter with small intricate pieces, the edges might get a little crisper then the middle faster. So just keep your eye out for those.
Remove from sheet and place on a cooling rack.
And decorate, using whatever you want and as much as you want.