Brrrr!

Oooooo, there’s definitely a bit of a chill in the air! I’ve suddenly got an over whelming urge to snuggle up under a blanket, eat lots of puddings and watch classic 80’s movies or back to back episodes of a gritty t.v. series.

I spent a few hours up at the allotment today putting in some hard graft, and although it was a lovely bright day with clear blue skies, it was decidedly nippy! I then took my little old dog Bob out for a walk (actually it’s a bit more of a shuffle these days – he’s a ripe old age of nearly 16 bless him!). After so much fresh air and exposure to chilliness I felt rather sleepy and in a snuggley mood. I had a nice hot bath to warm my bones back up, got into my pijamas at 6pm, hid under a blanket and did some knitting while catching up on episdodes of  “The Great British Bake Off”.

All of a sudden and completely out of the blue, I had a very strong desire to feast upon gingerbread. I didn’t just want gingerbread, I needed it! I dashed off to the kitchen and frantically searched the cupboards for the right ingredients. I  felt a genuine sense of relief to find I had everything I needed!

I mixed all the ingredients together while salivating like one of Pavlov’s pups! I impatiently clock watched while the dough chilled in the fridge for a seemingly never ending 30 mins. I lovingly rolled out the dough, carefully cut out the shapes, and gently placed them into the oven. I sat crossed legged on the floor of the kitchen illuminated by the orangey glow of the oven light, comforted by the delicious smell of the baking gingerbread, and warming myself on the emanating heat. Until, at last, the pinger pinged and finally I could satisfy my craving! Back under my blanket I went with a plate of fresh, still warm, gingerbread ready for the new episode of Dexter on FX. Yum!

I’ve used the same gingerbread recipe for years as it is so simple and always turns out well. I thought I would share it with you guys  incase just like me you get struck by the gingerbread munchies as the temperature drops and Autumn creeps in.

Gingerbread Men

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz plain flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 4 oz soft brown sugar
  • 4 tbsp golden syrup
  • 2 oz butter or margarine
  • 2 tsp milk
  1. Pre-heat oven to gas 3 (160 oC).
  2. Grease a large baking sheet.
  3. Put the flour, bicarbonate of soda, ground ginger and cinnamon into a mixing bowl and mix gently.
  4. Put the brown sugar, golden syrup and butter into a saucepan and warm gently until the butter has melted, stirring regularly. Do not let it get too hot!
  5. Allow the saucepan to cool a little and pour into the mixing bowl along with the milk.
  6. Mix and knead into a firm dough.
  7. Wrap in cling film and put into the fridge for 30 mins.
  8. Roll out the dough to about 1/4 inch thick.
  9. Cut into about 12 figures (or whatever shapes you like really!)
  10. Place onto the baking sheet
  11. Bake for appox 12 mins at gas 3 (160 oC)

Note: The cooking time is crucial. One minute either way can mean the difference between too soggy and too crisp. What’s more, the best time depends on the oven. So, at first check after 10 minutes, then every minute there after. The biscuits are done when they are slightly browner at the edges, not as soft as they were when they started cooking, but definitely still soft on top. Cool for a couple of minutes before loosening from the baking sheet.

Happy baking! xxx

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