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Sunday, 17 November 2013


If you're like me, then you've probably already started celebrating Christmas; watching soppy Christmas films, squealing at mulled wine in Christmas markets and of course- baking festive treats. This week, under the spell of an eggnog latte and an impulse buy of angel wings, I decided it was a good time to bake gingerbread. Last year my gingerbread came in loaf form, a very traditional ginger sponge cake almost. This year, I went back to cookie cutters. This recipe is a Vanilli adaptation and is not for those who have a certain aversion to spice. Using fresh chillies and A LOT of fresh ginger, these crunchy gingerbreads certainly do pack a punch (more like a hard kick in the face). 

Firstly mix together your spices; 80g or so of fresh grated ginger, half a chopped red chilli, 12g of ground ginger, 5g of ground nutmeg, 5g of ground cinnamon, 5g of ground cloves and 2g of ground cardamom seeds along with a crack of black pepper. In a bowl, mix one egg with one egg yolk and set aside. In a large bowl, beat 200g of unsalted butter with 200g of brown sugar and 115g of golden syrup. Add the beaten eggs and combine everything together- finally add the spices. Mix in 560g of flour, with 1/4 tsp of bicarb of soda and 4g of fine salt. Mix it altogether until it becomes dough-like, shape it into a ball, wrap in cling film and put into the fridge to refrigerate for 20mins. 

Preheat the oven to 180 on fan. Once the dough has come out of the fridge and warmed to room temperature, roll it out to 1cm thickness on a well floured surface (flour the rolling pin as well). Cut out your gingerbread cookies using cookie cutters of your choice and bake in the oven on a lined/greased baking tray for 15mins. They should come out looking golden brown and crisp, leave 10mins or so to cool. 

Warning: this will make enough cookies to feed an army. 

P.S Novelty dinosaur cookie cutter is optional. But the Christmas-ier the better!

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