Well the title is certainly a mouth full. Unfortunately these are every bit as complicated as they sound. No part is particularly hard… but it is all very time-consuming.
All this time I’ve been posting up pictures of designs & all the while leaving out the most important bit. There is a reason for that… I just can’t bring myself to be that long-winded. Also, photographing the process requires me to stop what I’m doing & repeatedly wash my hands, photograph, & repeat.
I’m sharing these today though because they are totally worth it. Maybe I should begin though. First, you need to start with a good gingerbread recipe. The one I used came from a book called Cookie Swap. Make it as per the directions & cut out 40 star cookies. You will need 5 different sizes of stars, 8 star cookies of each size. This will make you 4 christmas trees.
Right, then you need to make royal icing (again, from cookie swap) & bring it to lining consistency & tint it light green. This is the consistency where when you drag a spoon through the icing it takes several seconds before the line disappears. You’re going to want to draw a start out line around the edge of each cookie. (if you notice, my lines aren’t consistent, this was because I thinned it too much.
Once the cookies have all been outlined, you then want to thin the icing to flooding consistency. This means that when you drag a spoon through the icing, it only takes half a second or so for the lines to disappear. Once that has been done, fill in the cookies. Again, as you can see in the picture above, my icing wasn’t quite thin enough. You can see that from the distinction between the filling & the lining. (if you want to see what proper lining icing looks like, check out the gingerbread men from this post)
Next, make some white icing to lining consistency & draw on the lines.
After, tint some more lining icing to dark green & draw on the dots.
Finally, once the cookies are dry, brush on some copper luster dust.
Last but not least, assemble the trees. You’ll need a little more icing to act as glue. You’re going to use two of each size star to make the trees.
And VOILA!!! I’m exhausted just reliving it. Still, they are beautiful aren’t they. I’m kicking myself for all the pictures being taken with my phone…. still, better these than none at all.
Now for the recipes.
– 800g (5 cups) flour
– 2.5 tsp ginger powder
– 1.25 tsp cinnamon
– 1 tsp cloves
– 1.5 tsp baking powder
– 0.5 tsp salt
– 240g (1 cup) butter
– 230g (1 cup) sugar
– 1 egg
– 320g (1 cup) molasses
– 30 ml (2 tbs) white vinegar
1. cream the butter & sugar.
2. add in the egg & beat until light & fluffy.
3. add in the molasses & vinegar & beat until incorporated.
4. fold in the dry ingredients & mix until just combined.
5. divide the dough in half, round into two balls, flatten into discs, wrap in plastic wrap & refrigerate for 3 hours.
6. roll out the dough, cut into desired shapes, place on a sheet of baking parchment & bake for 8 to 10 minutes @ 190ºC.
Ingredients, royal icing:
– 450g icing sugar (good quality)
– 75g egg whites
– 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
Directions, royal icing:
1. combine all the ingredients in a bowl & mix a little with a spatula to wet the sugar, place in a mixer & beat on high speed for two minutes until smooth & glossy.
2. thin or tint as necessary.
…for more recipes from us, check out our archives.