50 Perfect Gingerbread Men

Family Favorites

By
@Quinnn

I have made these adorable little guys for nearly 20 years. The original recipe appeared in Gourmet Magazine. My tattered, torn and stained copy needed to be recopied, so I thought I'd share. =)

This is a very easy, no-fail recipe. Very easy to roll, cut and transfer. Always delicious, flavorful and darn near foolproof. This is my "go to" recipe for holiday fundraisers and bake sales. Always popular with kids, they can be stacked or individually bagged for Christmas presents or stocking stuffers. Our family favorite with a nice hot beverage during the holiday season.


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Comments:

Serves:

Makes approximately 50 medium gingerbread men.

Prep:

30 Min

Cook:

5 Min

Method:

Bake

Ingredients

COOKIES:

1
cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1
cup packed light brown sugar
1
large egg
1
cup molasses
2
tb. cider vinegar
5
cups flour
2
tsp. ground ginger
1 1/2
tsp. baking soda
1 1/4
tsp. ground cinnamon
1
tsp. ground cloves
1/2
tsp. salt

DECORATOR ICING: (I DO THIS BY SIGHT. SORRY IF MY MEASUREMENTS AREN'T EXACT.)

1/2
bag powdered sugar
3
tb. butter, no substitutes
1/4
cup milk (approximate)
1
tsp. vanilla, clear is nice but not necessary.

Directions Step-By-Step

1
Please Note: Prep time does not include refrigeration time of dough.

In large bowl, cream butter and sugar together. Beat mixture until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg, molasses and vinegar. (Don't be afraid of this. You will not taste it.)
2
In another bowl, sift together flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and salt. (I whisk briskly for a minute or two, which does the same thing.) Slowly, add to the butter mixture, a little at a time until all is incorporated. Dough will be soft.
3
Divide the dough into thirds, form into 3 discs, dust lightly with flour and place each into a large ziplock bag. Flatten slightly and refrigerate for at least 3 hours. (Can be left overnight, if you wish.)
4
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Roll out dough, one piece at a time, 1/4 inch thick on a floured surface and cut out cookies with a 4" cutter dipped in flour for 50 men. Transfer the cookies with a spatula to a prepared, parchment lined cookie sheet, approximately 2" apart. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Do not over bake. Cool completely and then decorate as desired.
5
For the decorator icing:
Heat butter, and milk in medium saucepan. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla and powdered sugar to desired consistency with hand mixer.

To keep from hardening while you are decorating, you can keep the icing on a double boiler on the counter next to you, or just warm the bowl of icing slightly in the microwave. Too thin, add more powdered sugar. Too thick, add a few drops of milk. It's very forgiving. =) Should be thick enough to stack cookies when cool.