Gluten Free Christmas: Gingerbread Cookies with Royal Icing

It’s almost Christmas which means time for preparing those bakes for the big day!

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Today I’m going to share with you a recipe for Gluten Free Gingerbread Cookies which would make a lovely gift or edible tree decoration!
Gingerbread is my favourite and I have lovely memories of making it with my mum and sister during the Christmas holidays, but until now I’ve never made it gluten free!

In the past I have found making Gluten Free biscuits quite tricky, usually they would end up rising, lose their shape and the texture would be far too chewy. After a few experiments with different types of flour, I have come up with the perfect Gingerbread Cookie recipe that has both the taste and texture of proper Gingerbread – I guarantee no one would be able to tell they are Gluten Free!

These cookies would also make a lovely homemade Christmas gift. The recipe makes a very large batch (perfect if you’ve got lots of special people to give presents to) and the cookies keep well if stored in an airtight container or a clip top jar.

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Ingredients

For the Cookies:
125g gluten free self raising flour blend
200g rice flour, plus extra for dusting
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp cinnamon
125g unsalted butter
150g soft dark brown sugar
2 tbsp golden syrup
1 tbsp black treacle
1 large egg

For the Royal Icing:
1 egg white
250g Icing Sugar

Method:

1) In a large bowl, sift together the flours, bicarbonate of soda, ginger and cinnamon.

2) Using your hands, rub the butter into the dry ingredients until it becomes like fine bread crumbs and then stir through the dark brown sugar.

3) In a separate bowl whisk the egg with a fork, then add this to the cookie mixture along with the golden syrup and black treacle.

4) Mix until the ingredients come together. The cookie dough will appear quite wet at this stage but don’t be tempted to add more flour or you will dry out the dough!

5) Gently knead the dough on a floured surface with floured hands until it turns into a smooth, soft and slightly sticky ball of dough. Dust the dough with rice flour as you knead to stop it sticking to the work surface.

6) Wrap the dough in cling film and leave to chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours – chilling helps the dough to firm up so it can be rolled out.

7) Heat your oven to 180 degrees C/Gas Mark 4.

8) Roll out the cookie dough on a floured surface. Using festive cookie cutters, cut out the shapes you want then arrange the cookies on a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper.

9) The cookies will take different times to bake depending on their sizes:

Small Cookies – 8 to 10 minutes
Medium Cookies – 10 to 12 minutes
Large Cookies – 12 to 15 minutes

You will know when the cookies are done if they lift off the baking sheet easily. The cookies shouldn’t get too brown – watch out for burnt edges!

10. Transfer the cookies to a wire wrack to cool.

11. To make the Royal Icing, place 1 egg white in a bowl and slowly sift in the icing sugar in batches. In between each batch of sugar stir the icing with a wooden spoon or a balloon whisk until the icing thickens up.

12. Transfer the icing into a piping bag, if you are not using your icing straight away cover the bowl with cling film to prevent air getting to it which will cause it to harden.

13. Finally, have fun decorating your cookies however you choose!

I hope you all enjoy the Christmas season and will give my recipe a go this year.

I am taking a well deserved holiday, but I will be back in the New Year with more gluten free recipes for you all to try.  In the meantime, come and check out my out my Instagram page to see what else I get up to over Christmas!

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!  xxx

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