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Christmas Gingerbread Cookies and How to Decorate Them

Decorated Christmas Gingerbread Cookies
Decorated Christmas Gingerbread Cookies

Originally published on December 19, 2007.

One of the Christmas activities our kids always look forward to every year (they’ve been hounding us for a week already) is making their gingerbread cookies. They try to make each one differently than the others and earmark one or two to be received by a particular friend. We all spent the evening yesterday decorating s few dozen of these and stretching our creative design muscles. A few disposable piping bags, an assortment of colored sugars, candies and silver dragees all helped in creating the designs. There are no bad designs, just ‘experiments’ so we just leave the kids to their own devices even when minor disasters occur, like when a few hundred or so little silver dragees go hurtling across the floor. Right Olivia? 😉

That’s what memories are made of, so if you haven’t already, make the time to make some cookies and some memories with your own little ones. Enjoy and Merry Christmas!

1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup dark molasses
1/4 cup cold water
2 1/2 cups flour
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
2-4 tsp powdered ginger
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp allspice

Cream butter and sugar. Blend in molasses and water.
Sift together remaining ingredients and blend together until dough forms.
Chill 2 to 3 hours.

Roll out to a thickness of about a quarter inch and cut out with cookie cutters. Bake at 350 degrees F for 12-15 minutes. Cool completely and decorate as you like using royal icing to attach candy, raisins, nuts…whatever you like. Allow the decorated cookies to dry uncovered for several hours or overnight for the royal icing to harden.

Royal Icing

1 cup icing sugar
¼ tsp cream of tarter
1 large egg white

Combine all and beat until fluffy and stiff peaks form. You may need to add another tablespoon or two of icing sugar if the icing is too loose. Add a couple of drops of water at a time if the icing is too stiff. All of this depends on the size of your egg so the icing sugar measurement is just a guide and will vary slightly.

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