Happy National Cookie Day! We’re celebrating by getting warmed up for the holiday cookie season with this fragrant gingerbread. Although gingerbread cookie dough is traditionally formed into gingerbread men, the shapes you can make with this sturdy dough are limited only by your imagination. Here, we’ve given the cookies a glamorous makeover by using oversize Christmas-themed cookie cutters and decorating them with royal icing and other ornaments.
Christmas Gingerbread Cookies
- 5 cups (25 oz./780 g) all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1 Tbs. ground ginger
- 4 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 3/4 tsp. ground cloves
- 1 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 tsp. allspice
- 1 1/2 tsp. salt
- 16 Tbs. (2 sticks) (8 oz./250 g) unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup (3 1/2 oz./105 g) firmly packed light brown sugar
- 1/2 cup (4 oz./125 g) granulated sugar
- 1 cup (11 oz./345 g) unsulfured molasses
- 1 egg
- Colored sugar and royal icing for decorating
1. Have all the ingredients at room temperature.
2. Over a sheet of parchment paper, sift together the flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, allspice and salt. Set aside.
3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat the butter on medium-high speed until fluffy and pale yellow, 4 to 6 minutes. Add the brown and granulated sugars and beat for 1 minute. Reduce the speed to low and add the molasses, beating until well combined, about 1 minute. Add the egg and beat until combined, about 30 seconds.
4. Add the flour mixture in 4 additions, beating in each addition before adding more. Beat just until combined, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
5. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface. Using floured hands, form the dough into a smooth mound and divide into 4 equal portions. Shape each into a disk and wrap separately with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 2 days.
6. Place racks in the top third and bottom third of an oven and preheat to 400°F (200°C). Line several baking sheets with parchment paper.
7. Remove 1 dough disk at a time from the refrigerator and let stand for 10 minutes. On a floured surface, roll out dough to a thickness of 1/4 to 3/8 inch (6 mm to 1 cm). Dip a cookie cutter into flour and cut out cookies and transfer to the prepared baking sheets. Repeat with the remaining dough, rerolling scraps to cut out additional cookies.
8. Bake the cookies until edges are set and lightly browned on the bottom, rotating pans 180 degrees and from top to bottom halfway during baking, 8 to 10 minutes total. Transfer the baking sheets to wire racks and let the cookies cool completely on the baking sheets. Decorate the cookies as desired with colored sugars, decorating pens and royal icing. Makes about 3 dozen cookies.
Williams Sonoma Test Kitchen