Gingerbread Men Cookies with Carob Molasses
These gingerbread men cookies are absolutely delicious and bursting with flavor. They are made of spices and carob molasses and are a great addition to your Christmas dessert table or even a great gift basket.
Carob molasses (dibs al caroob) is a dark brown syrupy liquid that has a natural sweetness with a deep smooth flavor and a touch of acidity. It has terrific health benefits. It is so rich in vitamins and minerals like vitamin A, calcium, iron and phosphorous and it has powerful antioxidant, protecting your body. So it is a healthy dessert that is good for you.
These crunchy cookies are fun, easy to make and incredibly delicious! You can find carob molasses at Middle Eastern grocery stores.
For the gingerbread men cookies:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup + 1 teaspoon sugar
90g. / 3 oz. butter, softened
11/2 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup carob molasses
2 teaspoons ginger powder
11/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon allspice
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
For the eggless royal icing:
2 cups icing sugar (powdered sugar)
4 tablespoons milk
2-3 tablespoons sugar syrup (atter) / ready corn syrup
Sift the flour in a bowl. Add the baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger powder, cinnamon powder, allspice and ground cloves. Mix well and set aside.
In a bowl, cream the butter using an electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add the sugar, egg and vanilla extract and beat just to homogenize the mixture. Stir in the carob molasses and beat for 30 seconds to infuse the carob molasses with the batter.
Gradually add the flour mixture to the batter. With the mixer, beat the mixture on low speed for 1 minute or just to homogenize the batter. Move the beaters around the bowl and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula while mixing, ending up with a dough that is neither too soft nor too firm. Set the dough aside for 2 hours.
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Place a rack in the center of the oven.
Divide the dough into 2 equal parts. Place one of the dough in a plastic bag and roll with a rolling pin to a thickness of 1/2 cm/ ¼ inch.
Tear off the plastic bag and cut the dough with a gingerbread man cutter. Repeat the procedure with the second dough.
Transfer the cookies on parchment lined cookie sheets, leaving 2.5 cm/1 inch of space in between.
Bake one sheet at a time for 8 - 10 minutes. Don’t let the edges become dark brown or the cookies will over bake. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool down completely. Transfer to a wire rack.
For the royal icing:
In a bowl, add the icing sugar and milk. Stir well and add 1 tablespoon of sugar syrup at a time. You may no need to add all the called amount of the sugar syrup. The mixture should be smooth but the consistency should be a bit thick. If the paste is runny add a little more icing sugar, and if the paste is too thick add a very little amount of milk (go slow while adding milk). The icing will harden if left open or exposed to air so put it directly in a squeeze bottle.
Decorate the gingerbread cookies as desired with the royal icing.
Note: 1 cup is 250 ml
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