Last year at this time, I was back in San Francisco hopping from cookie exchange parties to a cookie decorating workshop to holiday get-togethers. This year has been much calmer, which has been helpful to keep holiday weight gain at bay, but I have no parties to bake for! I managed to figure out how to still get in my annual baking by hosting a holiday baking and decorating event at the American Women’s Club of Zurich. It gave me an excuse to plan another event (wedding withdrawals?) and a reason to get together with other ladies and bake and decorate the night away.
Be sure to keep reading for the final holiday giveaway!
We made ornament cupcakes with this chocolate buttercream recipe, sprinkles, and thin red vines for the top of the ornament.
We also made peppermint shortbread candy canes, from the same recipe as my peppermint teabag cookies. We dyed half of the recipe red, rolled them in cylinders about 4-5 inches long, twisted them together, and formed a small hook when laying them on the baking sheet.
The last thing we made were gingerbread cookies with royal icing. My normal stock of cookie cutters is somewhere in storage in the states, so I had to buy a few new ones. The gingerbread men were sold out by the time I tried to buy them, so we made gingerbread Christmas trees, snowmen, and candy canes instead of men. Oh, and we did use my new yoga men cookie cutters, but I’ll save those for another day!
I had a hard time finding molasses (things you don’t realize you miss until they are no where to be found), so while I was planning the party, I found a gingerbread recipe that didn’t require molasses. I ended up finding molasses at the last minute, but I still tried out the no-molasses recipe, and honestly, I think I like it better than molasses gingerbread!
Get your rolling surface ready with a good amount of flour.
Cut those cookies! Preferably with Gingerbread men, unlike me.
Bake until golden brown.
They are almost too cute to eat. Almost.
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 4 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 ½ cups butter (340 grams)
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- ½ cup honey
- 1 egg
- In a medium bowl, or your large cup measure, combine the first six ingredients and mix them together. Set aside.
- Cream the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl until fluffy. Add in the honey and the egg and beat well. Slowly add in the flour mixture, and mix until the butter and flour mixtures are well combined.
- Get out a large piece of plastic wrap and sprinkle a little flour on it. Shape the dough into a regtangle shape. Wrap up the dough and chill in the refrigerated for at least 2 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F, 180 degrees C.
- Once the dough is chilled, flour your rolling surface. Roll the dough into a 1/8-inch thickness. Add flour as necessary to keep the dough from sticking. Now that the dough is rolled out, you can cut out your cookies with your favorite cookie cutters.
- You can chill your cutouts in the freezer for 20 minutes before baking to ensure they don’t spread, or your can just bake. Bake for about 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown.
- Frost with royal icing and decorate with whatever you would like!
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