“And in a case under the glass were rows and rows of dark, dry gingerbread, each slab so studded with gilt stars that the shop itself seemed to be faintly lit by them.”
-Mary Poppins, P.L. Travers
Disclaimer: Ginger products were gifted from The Ginger People.
Gingerbread– it’s such a core of our Christmas baking rituals, and yet there are so many variations of gingerbread. Your family recipe might be a soft gingerbread cookie that uses golden syrup, or a rich, dark cake. In this case, I’m interpreting ‘dark, dry gingerbread’ to be a molasses-based hard cookie, and cutting them into rectangles as they’re described as ‘slabs’. You might interpret ‘slab’ differently and think it’s a cake!
I typically pop powdered ginger into my recipes, but The Ginger People sent me their products to try out, including crystallised and uncrystallised ginger bits, ginger juice (I’m now addicted to using this for a tea in the morning), ginger syrup and minced ginger. Their recipes on the ginger bits box gave me some ideas, so my final gingerbread recipe combined powdered ginger, crystallised ginger and minced ginger. While having fresh ginger is nice, I’ll be honest, I always buy it with the best of intentions, only to find when I finally reach for it, that it’s shriveled away to nothing. So having a jar on the fridge is a nice option.
The Mary Poppins version uses golden paper stars that the children later keep in shoeboxes and drawers, however, in place of paper stars, I’ve brushed a golden edible powder on top of the cookies, that makes the gingerbread shimmer magically.
- 3c plain flour
- ½ c brown sugar
- 1 tbsp crystallized ginger, minced
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp minced ginger
- 1 tbsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp cloves
- ½ tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp bicarb soda
- ¼ cup molasses
- 112g butter
- pinch of salt
- ¼ c boiling water
- In the mixer, stir together the flour, sugar, bicarb soda, salt, ground ginger, cloves, cinnamon and nutmeg.
- In a large glass measuring cup, add together the molasses and butter, and heat in the microwave until the butter is melted.
- Stir into the flour mixture, also adding in the minced and crystallised ginger bit, and the boiling water.
- Once combined, turn out onto a sheet of baking paper.
- Wrap, then wrap with cling wrap to hold together, and place in the fridge for 1-2 hours to chill.
- Remove from fridge and let sit for a few minutes.
- Preheat oven to 160C.
- Roll out dough into a rectangle.
- Trim off the rough edges, and cut into rectangular bar shapes.
- Separate the rectangles onto a baking tray.
- Bake for ~10-15 minutes, until golden brown.
- Once cool, brush with an edible gold powder to make the gingerbread shimmer.
Thanks to The Ginger People for sending me their products to use!
If you’re in Australia, you’ll find their products in Coles and Woolworths. If in the US, I’ve linked the below photos to Amazon. (The Crystallised Ginger Bits are really nice to munch on by itself).