Christmas baking is definitely one of the best type of baking, and what better Christmas treat to make than gingerbread! I've chosen to keep this very classic with a thin and crisp biscuit that is slightly soft in the centre and has a warm gingery flavour. To keep this gingerbread from being too strong or bitter as well as avoiding a thick, brittle biscuit I have missed out the treacle in this recipe and chosen to just use a little golden syrup and muscovado sugar instead as I think this makes a lighter biscuit but still gives full flavour with a deep caramel note.
I have iced them with royal icing which you can pipe out and it will dry hard making it perfect for decorating any type of biscuit, also I think it's perfect white colour contrasts beautifully with the golden gingerbread!
Makes 20-25 gingerbread biscuits.
For the gingerbread:
175g plain flour
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp ground ginger
50g Unsalted butter
90g dark muscovado sugar
2 tbsp golden syrup
1 medium egg
For the decoration:
1 egg white
230g Icing sugar
Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/gas 4.
Line a large flat bakng tray with grease proof paper or teflon sheets
Place the flour, bicarbonate a of soda and ground ginger a a large bowl and stir together. Rub in the cool butter until the mixture resembles fine bread crumbs.
Next stir in the sugar and add the golden syrup and the beaten egg and mix with your hands until it forms a smooth ball of dough.
Roll out the dough to about 5mm thick on a floured surface and cut out your desired shape. I have chosen Christmas shapes such as Christmas trees, stars and snowflakes.
Transfer the shapes to a tray and place in the fridge for 10 mins. Doing this will help them hold their shape well and keep some definition.
Remove the shapes from the fridge, they should be firm, place in the oven for 10-12 minutes.
The gingerbread should be a slightly darker shade in colour and the edges should be beginning to get hard but the centre should be slightly soft. Leave them to cool completely before serving them or piping on them.
Meanwhile prepare the royal icing. Briskly whisk the egg white with an electric whisk until just a little bit bubbly, but not frothy yet.
Next begin adding the icing sugar 2 tbsp at a time beating gently in between additions. continue ading the sugar until you have used all of it and the icing holds soft peaks.
Once completely cooled transfer the royal icing to a piping bag fitted with a small plain round nozzle and pipe any designs you like, the smaller the nozzle end, the finer the decoration will be.