Though we don’t keep any sweets at home besides dark chocolate (82% cacao solids, adored by grownups) and organic lollipops (adored by kids in our family), I believe, that holidays it’s a time when you can break certain rules. Life would be fun, if you do only what’s right and never let yourself or your kids have some fun.
Gingerbread Ornament is a great activity to do with your kids. It also makes a great gift option.
The dough is easy to work and the cookies are strong enough to hang on a Christmas tree. The dough needs to be refrigerated for at least 4h before rolling, so plan accordingly.
Ingredients (makes 2 dozens of cookies):
- 3 cups All-purpose unbleached flour
- ¼ tsp. Real salt
- 2 tsp. Ground ginger
- 1 tsp. Ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. Ground Nutmeg
- 1 tsp. Baking soda
- ¾ cup (110g) Butter
- ¾ cup Firmly packed brown sugar (the darker the better)
- 1 Tbsp. Blackstrap Molasses
- 1 Egg
- 1tsp. Pure Vanilla Extract
- Sift flour into the bowl
- Add salt, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and baking soda to flour and mix
- Beat softened butter with sugar, then add an egg, molasses, and pure vanilla extract and mix
- Work in flour with spices in the butter mixture, adding flour little by little
- When the dough is all mixed, separate it into two parts, wrap it and refrigerate from 4h to 2 days
- Take out the dough from the fridge and roll it on a lightly floured surface
- Preheat oven to 380F and line baking tray with parchment paper
- Cut cookies with cookie cutters and put them on the baking tray, leaving a 1-inch space between them
- Make a hole in each cookie with a toothpick (to insert ribbon or string to hang the ornament); make sure that hole is large enough as it will shrink in the baking process
- Bake around 10 minutes or until edges start to brown
- Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes, then transfer to cooling rack for another 20 minutes
At this point, your cookies are ready for decoration or for adding a ribbon.
I’m not a fan of icing and prefer to decorate with dark chocolate.
Chocolate decoration instructions:
- To melt chocolate put a little bowl with chocolate pieces in a water bath and melt (stirring will help to speed up the process)
- Pour melted chocolate into the sandwich bag (I don’t have any special tool for decoration, so I just used a sandwich bag), chocolate should be still liquid but not too hot
- Cut the corner of the bag with sharp scissors and let your inner Picasso out
- Leave cookies overnight to let chocolate settle completely
The last step is to add ribbon or string and hang it on your Christmas tree. I used ribbons and a tapestry needle was a big help in getting ribbon through the hole.
And what you’re doing with kids for this Christmas?