Soft Gingerbread Cookie Recipe

Gingerbread cookies

This is the best soft gingerbread cookie recipe I have ever tried. The cookies are soft, mildly gingery and very moreish. They taste fantastic when they are decorated with chocolate.

My son, Jamie, remembered this recipe from an old book we used to have. We left it behind when we moved to Canada, and I really miss it. I don't think it's exactly the same - but it's pretty close.

Having afternoon tea with children is great fun. Both our boys love to bake, and they're getting really good at it.

This soft gingerbread cookie recipe is a great one for beginner bakers. The dough does not need a light hand - in fact, it has to be kneaded for a short while to make it pliable.

For that reason, these tasty little cookies are often a part of our afternoon spread as the children can bake them whilst I am busy getting everything else ready.

They only take 10 minutes to bake, and they cool very quickly ready for creative decorating.

I'm sure this soft gingerbread cookie recipe works well because we make sure we roll the dough very thickly. If you make them too thin, they are still delicious, but they are more crunchy.

In addition, we made this recipe deliberately mild, because our children prefer that. But it is a simple matter to add more ginger if you prefer more of a gingery taste.

Another way to make them more gingery is to chop up some preserved stem ginger in syrup and mix it into the mixture just before you squeeze it together to make the dough. This is really delicious.

Soft Gingerbread Cookie Recipe

Level: Easy
Time: 35 minutes (includes 20 minutes cooking and cooling)
Makes about 15 small cookies

170g (1 cup) plain flour
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda (bicarbonate of soda)
60g (1/4 cups) butter
40g(1/4 cup) soft brown sugar
1/2 egg
2 tablespoons honey
(half tablespoon of chopped stem ginger in syrup, finely chopped - optional)

  • Set the oven to gas mark 4, 350F, 175C.

  • Sift the flour, ginger and baking soda into a bowl.

  • Add the butter in small pieces and rub through fingers to make a mixture that resembles breadcrumbs.

  • Stir in the sugar.

  • Add the honey and the egg. Use your hands to mix everything together, squeezing together to form a dough. If it is too dry, add a little more egg. Be careful not to let it get too wet. It needs to be a soft, but non-sticky dough.

  • Knead the dough for a few minutes until it is completely soft and pliable.

  • Flour a surface and gently roll out the dough to a depth of about half a centimetre. If you make it much thinner, the cookies will be more crispy, but will still be delicious. And of course, you would make more.

  • Cut out the shapes you would like using cookie cutters and place the cookies on a baking sheet covered in baking parchment (greaseproof paper).

  • At this stage, if you would like to decorate them with currants or sultanas, now is the time to gently push them into place.

  • Put on the middle shelf in the oven for 10 minutes.

  • Leave for 15 minutes to cool before decorating.

Personally, I like these cookies to be cut into small shapes, particularly stars. Then I decorate them with a single chocolate button stuck on with icing sugar.

The children are more creative. They usually like to ice them and then decorate them with either chocolate buttons or sprinkles.

Serve with

Serve with any black tea. I also like the taste of ginger cookies with Masala Chai.

Although we occasionally just enjoy these cookies on their own, I think they are best as part of a full spread afternoon tea. They look great presented on a tiered afternoon tea stand among other little cakes and sweets.

Try them with chocolate dipped strawberries, chocolate cupcakes, little meringues and a selection of finger sandwiches for a very appealing children's afternoon tea.

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