Allergy free Gingerbread does not mean taste free gingerbread!
If you are an unbeliever, just give these little lovelies a try.
I really wish I could take credit for these biscuits, but they are actually from 'Chef's Toolbox'. That's a party plan style company selling kitchen stuff in your or your neighbours home.
I was interested to see what they had on offer, and found a really cute silicon gingerbread house mold. I thought it would be good to make a dairy free chocolate house in. I was giving it the once over when I saw the companies recommended recipe sheet. It didn't look too bad- it didn't include egg, which was interesting, and it would be easy enough to convert by just swapping out the flour and fats. Of course you can vary the spices as well, I added extra ginger to mine.
I thought I'd give it a try.
125g brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
300g treacle or golden syrup
1 tablespoon ground ginger
180g butter or I used Nuttlex
500g plain gluten free flour
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
In a large bowl, beat the sugar, salt, treacle, ginger and butter together with an electric mixer on medium speed for 2 minutes.
Add remaining ingredients and mix until mixture forms a thick dough.
I admit to being sceptical. The dough was very, very soft. Perfect for squishing into the mold, but I wanted to make shaped cookies and cut outs with it as well. The secret was in the chilling.
As the dough is so soft it must be kept cold when rolling and shaping. Christmas for us Aussies is usually Hot. So I broke the process down like this:
1. make dough
2. chill dough
3. using small amount of dough, place on a thin sheet/board lined with baking paper. Place another sheet of baking paper on top, then roll out. Don't go to thin.
4. stick back in the fridge briefly
5. cut out shapes
5. again briefly chill- or freeze dough before transferring to a baking sheet lined with baking paper.
I know that this seems a lot of work, but it's not a lot more than normal really, just about 10 minutes or so.
Bake the shapes at * for 10-12 minutes, though this will vary depending on how thick your shapes are, and how big. My big thick ones took about 15 mins.
Let them cool on the pan. They will be get crisp as they cool.
They are a lovely tasty gingerbread that has a nice crisp bite to it. The dough also freezes well if you make too much, or you like to hoard a stash in the freezer for emergencies- or hungry moments.
I like to have some cookies "ready to go" cut or portioned out in the freezer, so if anyone says they're popping over I can get some in the oven before they arrive. This way I look so organised and domestic, that they are stunned and amazed (and jealous) by my awesomeness. I just smile a little, and let them think I just happened to be baking at the time. Please don't tell them my secret.
So dear Readers, do you have any secret tips for me? I promise I won't tell anyone, really....