Monday, November 22, 2010

Sunday Bake of the Week: Gingerbread

Holiday cookie baking in our home is a funny thing; shortbread and gingerbread, the two cookies that are most representative to me of the holiday season, also happen to be the two cookies Chris detests the most.

And then there's Lucien. Given the choice between a chocolate chip cookie or a gingerbread one, he almost always goes for the gingerbread. So when planning the cookies that I will be baking each year, I have to make sure that there are enough that Chris will enjoy to combat the gingery goodness.

But for all of us gingerbread lovers, here's a recipe that's sure to make your yummiest gingerbread people (and trees!) ever;

As well as the perfect base for all that candy!


    3/4 cup ( 175 mL) unsalted butter, melted
    3/4 cup ( 175 mL) lightly packed brown sugar
    1 egg, lightly beaten
    1/2 cup ( 125 mL) molasses
    3 cups ( 750 mL ) all-purpose flour
    1 tbsp ( 15 mL) ground ginger
    2 tsp ( 10 mL) cinnamon
    1/2 tsp ( 2 mL) each of allspice, salt and baking soda

1. In a bowl, using a wooden spoon or electric mixer, beat butter with brown sugar until blended, at least 2 minutes. Beat in egg. Stir in molasses. In a large mixing bowl, using a fork, stir 2 cups (500 mL) flour with ginger, cinnamon, allspice, salt and baking soda until evenly blended. Make a well in centre, then pour in molasses mixture. Stir until all flour is absorbed. Stir in remaining flour, 1/4 cup (50 mL) at a time, until dough is no longer sticky but still soft. Divide dough into 4 portions. Form into balls. Wrap or place in resealable plastic bags. Flatten dough slightly and seal. Refrigerate until cold, at least 30 minutes or up to 1 week, or freeze.

2. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350F (180C). Lightly grease baking sheets with shortening or vegetable oil, or coat with cooking spray. Roll out 1 ball of dough until 1/4 inch (0.5 cm) for thick cookies or 1/8 inch (0.3 cm) for thinner cookies. Cut into shapes using cookie cutters. Place on baking sheets.

3. Bake in centre of 350F (180C) oven until deep brown around edges and firm to the touch, about 10 minutes for thick cookies or 7 minutes for thinner cookies that are about 2 inches (5 cm) wide. Larger cut-outs require more baking time. Repeat with remaining dough.

4. Remove baked cookies to racks to cool. Cool sheets slightly before adding more cookies to be baked. Store cooled cookies in an airtight container in a cool dry place. They will keep well for at least 1 month.


  1. This post made me husband, also named Chris, also dislikes gingerbread and shortbread, both of which I love to make over the holidays...about the only holiday baking he'll eat is chocolate chip cookies and date squares. Go figure!

  2. Hi Sarah,
    I'm trying the gingerbread recipe right now! I knew I didn't have any molasses, but I looked up a substitute...honey! I thought I was all set until I discovered that I don't have allspice :( I looked it up and it's made of cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg. I put in a bit of each and it's cooling in the fridge right now. It tastes great, but I'll have to see how it bakes up. Thanks for the recipe! Leanne

  3. That sounds delicious Leanne! Perhaps if I use honey, and get rid of the ginger, I'd have a cookie Chris would actually eat! Thanks for the suggestion, I'm going to have to give that a try!


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