Tis the season

There is something about the crisp clean snow and the smell of warm gingerbread cookies baking in the oven that screams the holidays are here. The week after Thanksgiving is when Sydney and I start the gingerbread baking; hot apple cider and gingerbread cookies warm you from inside even on the coldest days. This week Colorado’s temperature dipped below zero, the snow began to fall early.  Each morning DF, Sydney, and I piled on layers of sweaters, coats, and gloves, with the hope that the snow will last through Christmas, except of course get warmer than it is now.

While decorating our homemade gingerbread cookies I realized this is what the holidays are about; baking with my daughter as we talk for hours about the day. I still become excited ,as my husband pulls into the garage, knowing he’ll grab a cookie that hasn’t had time to set. Wait anxiously to find out if they taste as good as the previous year. Each year he replies that it was the best cookie we ever baked. The cozy warm feeling of that special moment is irreplaceable.

 

I think Mr. Snowman is eying the mittens

Ginger Bread Cookies:

  • 425 grams/ 4-cups cake flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 5 grams/ 1-teaspoon baking soda
  • g grams/1-teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 ½ -teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1-teaspoon cinnamon
  • Fresh grated nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 120 gram/ ½-cup brown sugar
  • 113 grams/ 1-stick butter
  • 161 grams/ ½ molasses
  • 1-egg
  • Orange zest
  • Lemon zest

Prepare  your mise en place.

Mise en place

Sift the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, cloves, fresh grated nutmeg, and salt.

The fresh nutmeg smells amazing

In a medium saucepan on medium heat cook butter, molasses, sugar, lemon juice and the lemon and orange zest; cook until the butter has melted and the sugar has dissolved.

I hadn't realized how much the glare of snow showed through the glass

Pour the butter mixture into a jug to cool

cool almost to room temperature

Transfer to a large measuring jug or bowl and allow the mixture to cool to about room temperature and whisk in the egg.

Temper the butter mixture into the egg

 Whisk the tempered egg into the remaining butter mixture.

Add the tempered egg.

Add the dry ingredients and stir with a spoon till completely combined.

Mix the flour mixture in three batches

Dump the dough onto plastic wrap or a large plastic bag, work into a disk or 2 disks for easier use; place in the refrigerator for 1 hour or up to a week.

I find kneading with my hands prior to dumping gives a wonderful smooth cookie

Roll the dough in four batches directly on a silpat or parchment paper and cut out specific designs.

Make sure to space them apart

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees c/ 350 degrees F, position the rack in the middle of the oven.

Bake the cookies for 8 to 10 minutes or until they begin to darken. Cool on the pan for a minute or two and transfer to a cooling rack.

Completely let cool prior to decorating.

Voila!