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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Finally...

Its finals. How do I study for finals? Ya...about that...Everyone has their own de-stressing technique. Mine? Baking, obviously. So when my friend Sara invited me over for a study break, I suggested we make gingerbread cookies, and she jumped on board. I may not have expressed this previously, but I love Christmas. Christmas is the best holiday of the year. Sorry fellow Jews, but no one gets this excited about Hannukah or Yom Kippur. To make up for my own religion's lack of spirit I've joined in on the Christmas cheer and have adopted it as one of my own favorite times of year. Everyone's happy, everything is bright and colorful, and there are so many types of cookies. Sara and I spent the morning shopping for ingredients and baking. We started with a simple recipe, but adapted it to my liking, and then made our own frosting recipe as well. As we put the dough in the fridge to chill ***ESSENTIAL STEP DO NOT SKIP*** we studied, or more Sara studied and I planned about how I was going to decorate my little crispy ginger-y men. And then, the decorating time came and then the eating. They were crunchy, spicy, and sweet, and the frosting was to die for. The hint of lemon and vanilla gives the richness of the cookie a nice contrast. Needless to say, Sara made my week, helped to de-stress me, and made me able to survive through finals. THANKS SARE!


**Also, shout out to Janice for being herself and helping around the kitchen, keep doing your thang Jan!

Gingerbread Men: makes about 3 dozen
Ingredients
3 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp all spice
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp salt
1 stick salted butter, softened room temp.
1/4 cup vegetable shortening, room temp
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup molasses
1 large egg



Recipe: Combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, cloves, and salt in a medium bowl.
In a separate large bowl beat the butter and shortening until mixed. Add in brown and white sugars and cream, beating about 3 minutes. Add molasses and egg and beat for 3 more minutes until fluffy and light. With a wooden spoon, gradually add in the dry ingredients. A thick dough should come together and once this happens use your hands to really work the ingredients into one. Separate dough into 2 disks, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
Once chilled, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Flour a clean surface and a rolling pin. Lay out one disk, roll into 1/4 inch thickness and use cookie cutters to cut out desired shapes. Space evenly on pan and bake about 8-10 minutes, until firm to touch and dark brown in color. Let cool on wire rack and frost when totally cooled.

Royal Icing
4 cups powdered sugar
1 egg white
1/2 lemon
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tbs water

Combine all ingredients in one bowl. Start stirring with a wooden spoon and once well enough combined use a hand mixer for about 2 minutes. Separate into different bowls and dye with food coloring. Can be stored in airtight container.

DECORATE!!




























i'm one very happy hungree girl.
xoxo
hugnree girl.

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