If there’s one Christmas treat you can nail this year, it’s these! My boys and I have been making these for a number of years now since living in Canada. It is an activity that your children can participate in and it passes the time rolling the dough and making the shapes. Choose shapes like Christmas baubles, stars, reindeer or other animals They don’t have to look professional as it is more important to involve your family in the tradition.
They are filled with sugar and spice and all things nice. You can eat them without icing or with; either way they won’t last long – totally delicious and make lovely home made gifts.
Recipe for Christmas Spiced Cookies – makes approx 32 cookies
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour or sharp cookie flour (and more for dusting on bench)
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cloves
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
250 gm block of butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoon vanilla paste
1 large egg white, mixed with 1 tablespoon water lightly whisked
Royal Icing – optional
1 egg white
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 1/2 cups of pure icing sugar, sifted.
1. Combine dry ingredients; flour, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, salt, nutmeg and cardamom in a medium mixing bowl
2. In an electric stand mixer, beat butter and sugar in large bowl with paddle attachment until creamy.
3. Beat in eggs one at a time with vanilla until fluffy.
4. Remove bowl and stir in flour mixture until combined and divide dough in half and roughly flatten each into discs and wrap them in plastic and refrigerate for 1.5 hours.
5. Preheat oven to 180 C.
6. Spray your cookie-cutter shapes with non-stick cooking spray.
7. On a lightly floured surface with floured rolling pin, roll out half of the dough to approximately 1 cm thick.
8. Press your cutters in and pull them gently and place on trays lined with baking sheets.
9. Brush with egg-white mixture.
10. Re-roll scraps of dough and repeat.
11. Bake cookies in oven for 15 mins or until slightly golden. Remove to racks to cool.
For Royal Icing;
To make royal icing, whisk egg white and lemon juice together in a kitchen aid bowl or similar. Add icing sugar one spoonful at a time to whisk until smooth and combined which might take around 5 minutes and look a little meringue like. Using a piping bag, fill it and make any designs you like on your shapes.
Store at room temperature in an air tight container for 7-10 days or freeze.