I don’t have one of those night-time-Christmas-market-drinking-spiced-wine gingerbread traditions to share with you.
I don’t even have one of the cosy-around-the-fire-decorating-an-elaborate-gingerbread-house-while-the-snow-falls type traditions.
What I do have is more of the crank-up-the-aircon-because-we’re-about-to-turn-on-the-oven genre.
I’ve only ever experienced Christmas in summer, you see. Well, technically at 4 degrees north of the equator, this is South Sudan’s winter, but it makes no difference, it’s the same hot. You know that emoji, the one that you might think was ‘crying’? It actually means it’s-so-hot-my-eyeballs-are-sweating.
So the virtue of the recipe I’m about to share with you is that it is quick and easy, and won’t heat up your kitchen too much. These gingerbread cookies cook in just 8 minutes! Depending on how much space you’ve got in your oven, even with preheating time, the oven need not be on for more than 20 minutes all together. And all the sweaty mamas said, “Amen!”
What’s more, its easy enough for the kids to whip up by themselves and it makes enough for a family of 5 or 6 to get stuck in rolling, cutting and generally just enjoying all the sensory play with the dough. Try not to play with it, I dare you.
350g (2.5 cups) flour
125g (1 stick) cold butter cut into chunks
1 tsp bicarb soda
2 tsp powdered ginger
175g (3/4 cup) brown sugar
4 tbsp honey (or golden syrup)
1 egg, beaten
Mix flour, butter, bicarb and ginger in a food processor (or rub between your fingertips) until in resembles fine bread crumbs. Add sugar and mix it through.
In a separate bowl, beat the egg, mix in honey, and add liquid to the dry ingredients.
Mix until your gingerbread becomes a dough you can shape into a ball. Divide into 2 and wrap in cling film and let rest in fridge for half an hour.
Preheat oven to 180’C.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough until it is about half a centimetre thick. (A thinner cookie will make a crispier cookie). Equip family members with cookie cutters. Go for it.
Cook for 8 minutes at 180’C. Try not to eat all of them on the first day.