I posted a recipe for Gingerbread men a while back (or ninja bread men, I do like a play on words!) This though is adapted to give a lighter result which is less dominated by anything other than the ginger flavour. I found the treacle in the old recipe tended to drown out the spicy warmth.
Gingerbread Men – Makes 8-20 depending on size
60g, 2oz Butter or margarine (use non dairy to make dairy free)
60g, 2oz Caster sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp Runny honey
115g, 4oz Plain (all purpose) flour
1 tbsp Ground Ginger (Powdered Ginger)
Pinch mixed spice (pumpkin pie spice)
Preheat the oven to 180oC, 350F, Gas Mark 4.
Cream the butter and sugar, add the honey, vanilla extract, cream together then mix in the dry ingredients. Bring together with your hands and kneed lightly. Roll out thinly, using flour to dust and cut out the men. Reroll any scraps and repeat.
Put the men or shapes onto baking trays lined with non stick baking paper.
Bake for approx 8-10 minutes or until starting to brown and crisp (they won't be completely crunchy until allowed to cool).
Cool on a wire rack, then decorate.
I did the gingerbread man "Mummy" decoration with a simple plain buttercream and a narrow plain nozzle criss crossed over the men. I then cut off the excess at the sides of the biscuits and did the eyes with some black writing icing (I can never find I get a 'true' black from home colours.)
I have no idea whether having one of these is better than eating a pile of sweets. Ok, one of these is obviously better than a pile of sweets but I have always thought that home baking, even unashamedly full on, naughty ingredients home baking like this is somehow more fulfilling than sugary sweets. Hey, I could be wrong but it makes me feel good.
Store in an airtight tin and they should keep a couple of days.
There's no need to decorate these in the Hallowe'en style I've suggested, you could make it more traditional or, a great idea for a kids party, get some writing icing and get them to decorate them themselves! Surprisingly popular with adults as well as kids!
Over 1 year olds only please because of the honey. Enjoy!
Make it Thrifty:
A pretty cheap recipe as it is but look out for bags of Indian or Chinese spices rather than buying ginger in tiny jars. It does lose a bit of potency over time but it still keeps reasonably well.
I've linked this lovely old recipe up to the Spice Trail Ginger challenge.