A recipe for the best ever gingerbread cookies. Gingerbread biscuits that hold their shape when cooked & taste delicious.
The best ever gingerbread cookies
I know I know, another ‘best ever’ post but really, these are the best ever gingerbread cookies that I’ve come across.
I’ve been making the recipe for years and it has never failed me.
I also find it irresistible and so usually only make it for gifts.
On this particular occasion, I made some yellow and grey spotted gingerbread to give as little thank you gifts to all by baby shower guests.
I love that the dough can be made in advance and frozen until you’re ready to bake it.
Just divide it in half, flatten into a disc, wrap in plastic wrap then pop it in a bag.
To me, it seems like much less effort when you can just pull the dough from the freezer, defrost, bake and decorate.
I made at least 3 batches over Christmas last year.
The dough is nice and gingery with the essential richness from the golden syrup and brown sugar.
You can bake them soft or firm and I’ve used the recipe to make a gingerbread house too (just bake it a little longer).
These are my little gifts all packaged up.
I thought the icing was totally dry when
I put them in the container ready to be packaged up the next day.
I thought wrong.
The grey, sadly, wasn’t all that grey.
My black gel colour made a lovely shade of grey but as the icing dried, it turned a shade of purple with ugly black specs through it.
I was not overly impressed.
At least the yellow ones turned out as I hoped.
How to make gingerbread biscuits step-by-step
If you’re more of a visual person, here are the steps to make the best ever gingerbread.
The photos are a little old but that doesn’t make the cookies any less delicious.
STEP ONE – melt the butter, sugar and golden syrup together.
STEP TWO – Stir it over the heat until it reaches a smooth consistency.
STEP THREE – Once it’s all nicely combined, remove the mixture to a bowl and cool. If you’re impatient you can put the bowl in an ice water bath.
STEP EIGHT – Shape the dough into a disc and wrap it up then refrigerate for about an hour.
STEP TEN – Cut out your shapes of choice.
STEP ELEVEN – Bake in a 180C/160C (350F/320F) fan-forced oven for 7-10 minutes depending on how you like them. I like mine a little bit chewy so tend to take them out as soon as they turn golden.
STEP TWELVE – When they’re ready, remove from the oven but leave them on the baking trays for about 5 minutes before moving to cooling racks.
While they’re cooling, it’s time to make the icing.
You can use store-bought writing icing but I like the fresh stuff.
Plus it’s a good way to use up the egg white.
STEP FIFTEEN – Leave them to rest until the icing sets.
Excuse my unsteady circle-drawing hand.
To make the icing nice and smooth with the dots, I first piped a thick white border of icing and let it set.Then I filled them with a thinner yellow and while the icing was still wet, dotted spots of white into the yellow then left them to set again.
I have to say I was a little bit sad when I counted them and realised I only just had enough for two for each guest.
There were none left for the mumma-to-be.
Not that it mattered, I ate my fair share of sweets at the baby shower as you might remember.
Use this recipe to make:
What about you?
Are you a gingerbread fan?
Do you have a favourite recipe or do you like to try a new one each time (I hope so!)?
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- 125g (1 stick) butter
- 1/2 cup golden syrup
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 free-range egg yolk (keep the white for the icing)
- 1 tbsp ground ginger
- 2 tsp mixed spice
- 1 tsp bicarb-soda
- 2 1/2 cups self-raising flour, sifted
- 1 egg white
- 1 cup icing sugar
- Combine butter, golden syrup and brown sugar in a small pan and heat, stirring, over low heat, until melted.
- Remove to a bowl and cool (I usually put the bowl in an ice bath for a ltitle while because I’m impatient!).
- Stir in the egg yolk and remaining dry ingredients to form a soft dough.
- Divide the dough in half and shape each half into a flat disc, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour to firm up.
- Preheat the oven to 160C (350F) fan-forced and line two baking trays with baking paper.
- Take one portion of dough out of the fridge and on a lightly-floured surface, roll it out to 7-8mm.
- Use floured, round cookie cutters to cut rounds of dough.
- Place on a baking paper-lined tray and bake for 7-10 minutes or until firm (they do firm a little more when they're cooling though so not too firm).
- Leave them to rest on the trays for 5 minutes then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
- To make the icing, whisks the egg white to almost firm peaks.
- Slowly whisk in the icing sugar.
- Colour as desired.
- To decorate as I have, pipe a thick round of white around the outside of each biscuit then leave it to set.
- Thin a portion of icing and colour it then fill each cookie with the colour.
- Pipe spots of white on each one while the colour is still wet then leave them for several hours to dry.