Thursday, December 27, 2012

Cookies and Christmas

Hello friends!

So let's get right to it! Cookie time! My brother came home from college and asked...well demanded...some gingerbread men cookies. This caught me quite off guard because never have I had this requested from anyone in my family...but you can bet I was on top of it!

I loved this recipe and will now share it with you! Also, I found this delicious recipe for sugar cookies which were also requested this happy holiday season. So here are the two recipes for the cookies and also my icing recipe.

Sugar Cookies
I recruited my younger brothers to decorate ;)
1 cup real butter (no substitutions!) at room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 egg (make sure to use a large or extra large egg)
1 1/2 teaspoon almond extract (or other flavor of your choice, like vanilla)
3 C flour, lightly spooned into measuring cups and leveled (don’t scoop it!)
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy- about 2 minutes. Add in egg and extract and mix to incorporate.
In a separate bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt.  A very important note: It’s important to correctly measure your flour or you will end up with a dry, crumbly dough. Never, ever use your measuring cup to scoop up the flour.  Use a regular sized spoon and spoon the flour into the cup and then level it off with a knife.
 Slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix until completely combined.
Chill the dough in the fridge for about an hour, or use this great tip to make things easier:
When your dough is made, instead of putting it in the fridge, immediately roll  between 2 sheets of waxed or parchment paper and then place on a flat surface in the fridge.  Chill for about 20-30 minutes and then start cutting it out.  This way it chills faster and the bonus is that you don’t need to add extra flour to roll it out.  If you don’t use this tip, proceed as follows:
When you’re ready to roll out dough lightly sprinkle flour onto your work surface and roll out dough with a rolling pin.

Bake at 350 for 8-12 minutes. The baking time really depends on how you like them. If you like themreally and slightly chewy, about 8-9 minutes does it. If you like them slightly crisp and buttery, then go for 10-12.

Gingerbread Men Cookies
Little Bandit lost his legs as punishment for his crimes
  • 6 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup Truvia Baking Blend
  • 4 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon finely ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup unsulfured molasses
  • Royal Icing
  • Sanding sugar, for decorating (optional)
  • Candy, for decorating (optional)


  1. Whisk together flour, baking soda, and baking powder in a large bowl. Set aside.
  2. Place butter and Truvia in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix on medium speed until fluffy. Mix in spices and salt, then eggs and molasses. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture, mix until just combined. Divide dough into thirds, wrap each in plastic wrap. Refrigerate until cold, about 1 hour.
  3. Line baking sheets with nonstick baking mats; set aside. Roll out dough on a clean work surface to 1/4-inch thick. Using a 4-inch gingerbread man-shaped cookie cutter, cut out cookies, and place on a baking sheet, at least 1 inch apart. Refrigerate until cold, about 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake cookies until crisp but not dark, 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool on sheets on wire rack.
  5. Using white icing in a squeeze bottle, decorate gingerbread men, as desired. While still wet, sprinkle with sanding sugar; let dry 10 minutes. Shake off excess sugar. Using additional icing, attach candy, using craft tweezers. Let dry completely 8 hours or overnight.  {Credit to Dani Fiori}

    Two of my loves: Trees and squirrels 
    Royal Icing
    1 Cup powdered sugar
    1 1/2 Tbsp milk
    1 tsp vanilla (I like to always add a little more :)
    The Gingerbread Hospital

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