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Recipe

Gingerbread biscuits

Alexa Johnston gets you out of the mall and into the kitchen to craft delicious edible Christmas gifts.

  • 20 mins cooking
  • Makes 50
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Ingredients

Gingerbread biscuits
  • 70 gram brown sugar
  • 70 gram sugar
  • 2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 200 gram treacle
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda, sifted
  • 150 gram butter
  • 1 large egg
  • 500 gram flour, sifted
Royal icing
  • 1 large egg white
  • 150 gram icing sugar, sifted
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

Method

Gingerbread biscuits
  • 1
    Preheat the oven to 160°C and line two baking sheets with baking paper or grease them lightly.
  • 2
    Heat the sugars, spices and treacle in a heavy-based pan, stirring with a wooden spoon until the mixture comes to the boil. Add the baking soda and stir again until the mixture froths up and turns a pale gold.
  • 3
    Remove from the heat and pour onto the butter in a mixing bowl. Stir well with a wooden spoon until the butter melts. Add the egg, followed by the flour and mix thoroughly to make a soft dough.
  • 4
    Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured board and gently knead until smooth. Cut in half and shape each piece into a rectangle. Wrap in waxed paper and put in fridge for 10 minutes.
  • 5
    Roll out one half of the dough on a floured board to about 3-5mm thick. Cut out shapes and place on the prepared baking sheets. The dough will be quite soft to begin with and you may need to use a spatula to lift the biscuits. You can re-roll the scraps several times since this won’t toughen the dough.
  • 6
    Bake for about 10-15 minutes (I bake one tray at a time so I can watch it carefully). The biscuits are cooked when they are firm to the touch and just beginning to brown. Cool on racks and store in an airtight container.
  • 7
    To make the icing, put the egg white and the icing sugar into a bowl and mix on slow speed with an electric beater until the icing sugar is moistened.
  • 8
    Increase speed to high and beat for 5 minutes. When you lift the beaters, icing should stand in small peaks with tips bending over slightly. Mix in lemon juice, which helps keep the icing white.
  • 9
    Spoon icing into a piping bag and cut off the tip to make a small opening. Pipe designs onto biscuits and remember that even a free-form squiggle looks good and tastes wonderful, so don’t get hung up on perfection. The icing sets quickly.
  • 10
    Store biscuits in airtight tins with waxed paper between the layers.

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