Tuesday, December 16, 2008

gingerbread cookies: two ways

We make gingerbread cookies every year... often more than once. Last night we rolled them out and baked them. Tomorrow we'll dress them. I iced a couple for packing in lunch boxes and sharing in this post, but the real fun is letting my children do the decorating. I have two versions to share. The classic gingerbread recipe with white icing and the sugar-free vegan recipe with raisins and dried fruit. My children love them both. The sugar free one is popular around here, because I don't put limits on how many they can eat. They love hearing me say "yes" when they ask for one more.

Classic Gingerbread Cookies

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Blend until creamy:
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
Beat in:
1/2 cup molasses
In a separate bowl combine:
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 1/2 cups of whole wheat pastry flour

Add dry mixture to the butter mixture alternately with 1/3 cup of water.
Blend in an electric mixer until the dough is dark and all is well incorporated.
Roll out a small portion at a time on wax paper until 1/4 inch thick. Cut out cookies with cutters and bake on an greased cookie sheet for 8 minutes. Cool and ice with a paste of 1/4 cup confectionery sugar to a few drops of water.

Sugar-Free Vegan Gingerbread

I've been making these for the last eight years. They're the perfect first cookie for a toddler, but everyone else enjoys them too! I had a special request for this recipe recently... this is for you Casey.

Follow the same recipe as above, but substitute maple syrup for sugar and vegetable oil for butter. After cutting out your cookies, but before baking, decorate with dried fruit.

We've been following along with the Crafty Crow/BellaDia Christmas Book and Activity Advent and you can find lots of fun Gingerbread Activities from day 14, here.

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  1. I was dreaming about this years gingerbread cookies last night . I think we are going to be making some matryoshka ones this year for the tree. Don't y you just love the smell of fresh gingerbread.

  2. Thanks for the recipes -- but I think you forgot to include the flour...how much? I love your blog -- it's my daily inspiration!


  3. Whoops! Thanks so much Deidre! I DID forget to add the flour! That's what I get for posting at 1 am in the morning. I've added it to the recipe... hope others will catch it before they try it. So sorry!

  4. ooh, yum! And how fun when you can eat as many cookies as you want! :) Thank you for your incredibly sweet and thoughtful comment the other day my friend. It made my whole week!

  5. Maya, I am so willing to make them! We have no molasses here, but a corn syrup can work it, yes? Tell me if otherwise...
    Thanks, beautiful!

  6. leave it to you to come up with a lovely gingerbread post...I have a feeling I would love both recipes too...xo

  7. I'm so glad I found your blog. Thanks for the recipe!

  8. oo-so cute-i love gingerbread but alas can't eat wheat! i will just dream about these you talented lady you!

  9. We just made a batch of the gingerbread cookies from your recipe, and they were fantastic! They were very quick to make and kid-friendly, and the four of us just about devoured the entire batch. Off to make another to have on hand!

  10. I think we'll make thse tonight....they are so much fun!!

  11. I just recently discovered your blog.
    Thanks so much for your gingerbread recipe! It sparked the urge in me to bake and I was making cookies like a madwoman last week. I felt like the quintessential Christmas housewife, baking cookies and listening to Christmas music (Manneheim Steamroller) while there's lots of snow outside. They turned out great! My husband was impressed by how dark they turned out (my downstairs neighbor thought they were chocolate!), and he tells me we "have" to make a whole gingerbread house from scratch next year!

    And this was the first time I've ever made gingerbread cookies! Thanks again!