Fun with Gingerbread, Part 1


It's beyond chilly here in Moscow (I mean, what is this, Russia?) and what better way to both celebrate the holiday season and fight the frostbite than baking some spicy gingerbread cookies.  This recipe can be used for both cookies and for house building (tune back in tomorrow for our cheater's version of a gingerbread house!) and will make your home smell heavenly. In this post we'll give you the recipe for the dough and tomorrow we'll give you some ideas for decorating the little beauties.

This recipe is from Martha Stewart and really can't be beat:

6 cups all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature 1 cup dark-brown sugar, packed 4 teaspoons ground ginger 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves 1 teaspoon finely ground black pepper 1 1/2 teaspoons salt 2 large eggs 1 cup unsulfured molasses

In a large bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Mix in spices and salt, then eggs and molasses. Add flour mixture; combine on low speed. Divide dough in thirds, and wrap in plastic. Chill for at least 1 hour. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside. On a lightly floured work surface, roll dough 1/8-inch thick. Use cookie cutters to cut desired shapes or place templates on top of dough and cut out using a paring knife. Transfer to prepared baking sheets. Bake until crisp, but not darkened, 15-20 minutes. GingerbreadSnowflakes

Be sure to check back in about how to decorate your gingerbread pieces (if you can keep from eating them all)!