Wednesday, 6 February 2013

2005 - Gingerbread Bullies

We didn't get to the Gingerbread Men until today (Dec. 17), after all. I used the recipe from Christmas Cookies (Oxmoor House, 1986). Martha Stewart's version made too much (and called for pepper!). And there was one in the Better Homes & Gardens Cookies magazine that used 1/4 cup fresh ginger, which I didn't have. I think both of those would have been too hot for kids' cookies too.

Charlie and I decorate Gingerbread Men for Christmas.

  This was a simple, straightforward recipe, which is all we needed (but doubled). I rolled out the dough and Charlie cut out the men — for a while! Once the novelty wore off, he grew tired of it. So, I cut them out and he used my tree-shaped spatula to lift them onto the trays — for a while! Eventually, I finished up while he played with his Hot Wheels and we wound up with 6 dozen men (he chose the cutter).

Scott Farkus and Grover Dill cookies by Charlie.
After supper, I made the icing, got out the bags, tips and decorations, and let him go to work. I helped, so he wouldn't feel overwhelmed. And even Charlie's brother and dad got in on the act and made one each. Charlie, whose current obsession is the classic holiday film, "A Christmas Story,"made a Grover Dill and a Scott Farkus gingerbread man! They are the two bullies in the film and one has "yellow eyes and green teeth". He's so funny! I hope I shouldn't be worried that he identifies with the "bad guys".

Our Gingerbread Men. Disregard the Bud.

Gingerbread Men

1/2 c butter or margarine, softened
1/2 c firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 c molasses
1 egg
3 1/2 c all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/2 c buttermilk

Cream butter; gradually add sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Add molasses and egg, mixing well.
Combine flour, baking powder, soda, salt, and spices, mixing well. Add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Shape into a ball; cover and chill 2 hours.

Roll dough to 1/4-inch thickness on a lightly floured surface; cut into desired shapes. Place 2 inches apart on lightly greased cookie sheets. Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 minutes. Remove to wire racks to cool. Decorate, as desired, with Royal Icing. Store in airtight containers. Yield: about 3 dozen.

(Note: I did not grease the cookie sheets; rather, I lined them with parchment paper.

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