Growing Chefs! Ontario Spicy Gingerbread Cookies

Spicy Gingerbread Cookies

Gingerbread has a very old history, dating back to the ancient Greeks and Egyptians! It used to be eaten year-round, and during the medieval times, was thought to bring good luck!
24 cookies
3 cups flour1/2 teaspoon baking soda1/4 teaspoon baking powder2 teaspoons ground ginger2 teaspoons ground cinnamon3/4 teaspoon ground cloves1/8 teaspoon finely ground pepper3/4 teaspoon coarse salt1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature1/2 cup packed brown sugar1 large egg1/2 cup unsulfured molasses Royal Icing Sanding sugars

Royal Icing

2 cups icing sugar, sifted1 1/2 tablespoons meringue powder9 tablespoons room temperature water
Stand mixer or hand mixerSpatulaWooden spoonMeasuring spoonsMeasuring cupsBaking sheetParchment paperBench scraper (optional)Piping BagScissors

Get Organized!

Gather all of your ingredients and equipment before you get started!

Get Prepped!

Whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices and salt in a large bowl and set aside. 

Beat butter and brown sugar together in a large bowl with an electric mixer until fluffy. Mix in eggs and molasses. 

Add flour mixture, mixing low until just combined. Divide dough in half and wrap each half in plastic. Refrigerate until cold and firm, about one hour or up to two days. 

For the icing, measure the icing sugar and meringue powder into a bowl. Stir to combine.

Get Cooking!

If baking that day, preheat oven to 350°F, 30 minutes before baking. 

Roll out dough on a lightly floured work surface until the dough is 1/​4‑inch thick. Cut into shapes of your choice, such as snowflakes or gingerbread men. 

Spread two inches apart on baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and refrigerate until the cookies firm up again, about 15 minutes. Bake cookies until crisp but not dark, 12 to 14 minutes. Let cool on sheets on wire racks. 

While you wait for the cookies to cool, make the icing. Using a hand mixer, slowly add water to the icing sugar and meringue powder while mixing. Add water until desired consistency is reached. A thicker consistency would be great for lines, and a thinner consistency will be great for filling cookies.

When cool, you can decorate the cookies with icing and sprinkles. When you pipe designs, sprinkle the icing with sanding sugar and let it sit for five minutes before tapping off the excess sugar. Then let the icing set completely at room temperature, which will take an hour or so, depending on how thick it is. 

Store cookies between layers of parchment or waxed paper in an airtight container for up to a week.