These are adorable and just the right size for everyone to have their own little gingerbread house to build, decorate and eat. You'll need to get a special cookie cutter for these to come together, but once you've got it, this will become a family tradition everyone can look forward to each year. The decorating process is a great project for kids or as a fun dessert activity for a party. Not in the mood to make gingerbread houses? This recipe is delicious using any shape cookie.
By: Special Guest of the Crinkled Cookbook, Madeline Keckler
2/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
2/3 cup molasses
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp baking soda
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 egg, beaten
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
4 cups flour, plus extra for dusting
Preheat oven to 325° and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Place brown sugar, molasses, cinnamon and ginger in a large pan over medium-low heat. Bring to a boil, stirring now and then. Remove from heat and stir in baking soda.
Add butter gradually, stirring well between additions to combine.
Add egg, vanilla and salt to sugar mixture, stir to combine.
Pour into a large bowl and add flour gradually, stir to combine.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured kitchen counter, cutting board or on a pastry cloth and knead until dough comes together and is no longer sticky, adding flour by the tablespoon if needed.
Roll out half the dough on the floured work surface to about 1/8" thick. Place gingerbread house cookie cutter on the dough and press to cut through the dough and create the outlines for the gingerbread houses.
Place the sectioned pieces of dough on the parchment paper and bake until edges are slighted browned, about 10 minutes.
Remove from the oven and let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for about 5 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before assembling and decorating.
Makes about 12 mini-gingerbread houses.
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We LOVE gingerbread houses in our family! (A special thank you to Auntie Maureen who always sends the kids the most beautiful and elaborate gingerbread house every Christmas.) This gingerbread recipe is also found on the back of the packaging the mini-gingerbread cookie cutter comes with and my daughter Madeline has been making these for years. A few tips from Madeline:
1. Once the molasses mixture has been added to the bowl with the flour, drop your pan from the stove into soapy water right away, otherwise the sugar and molasses tend to stick to the pan.
2. Try to only re-roll the dough about three times at most, otherwise it gets stiff and hard to handle.
3. It's a good idea to make and bake the cookies one day, then decorate the next.
Show us your pictures and tell us all about your mini-gingerbread houses in the comments below. XOXO