When I was younger, one of my absolute favourite Christmas traditions was making a gingerbread house. There was just something about creating it that made me so happy. I loved walking through the supermarket aisles and picking out the lollies that I would use for the roof tiles, for the windows and also for the garden. I also loved baking the gingerbread walls because I would get to eat any walls that would break. It honestly was the best thing EVER!
Fast forward to Christmas 2019 and I'm still whipping out the old gingerbread recipe (except I actually created this one on the spot and nailed it!). These gingerbread men are the perfect combination of crunchy and chewy, with the perfect amount of gingerbread flavour. They're also 100% vegan, dairy free, gluten free and nutritious (minus the icing but it's Christmas and we are allowed to enjoy ourselves).
Makes 18 gingerbread men
Here's the recipe:
For the Gingerbread:
2 cups almond meal
½ cup tapioca flour
2-3 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon
1½ tsp baking soda
Pinch of pink sea salt
¼ cup coconut sugar
¼ cup blackstrap molasses
¼ cup coconut oil
1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground flax meal, 3 tbsp water)
Spelt flour (or other flour of choice) for rolling
For the Icing:
Pre heat your oven to 180°C.
In a large mixing bowl, add the almond meal, tapioca flour, ginger, allspice, nutmeg, cinnamon, baking soda, salt and coconut sugar and mix until well combined.
Add in the molasses, coconut oil and flax egg and mix until it forms a dough like consistency.
Use your hands to form the mixture into a ball and then cover the bowl and refrigerate for 10 minutes.
Remove the dough from the fridge and place it on a floured surface.
Kneed the dough with your hands until it is well combined and resembles cookie dough.
Place a piece of baking paper over the dough ball and then take a rolling pin and roll the dough to your desired thickness (roughly 7mm thick).
Use a cookie cutter to cut out your gingerbread men and place them on a lined baking tray. Continue steps 7 and 8 until all of the dough is used.
Put the gingerbread men in the oven and cook them for 8-9 minutes - the longer you leave them the crispier they will get so don't leave them too long! Once cooked, remove them from the oven and then transfer them to a cooling rack.
In a small bowl, mix 2 heaped tbsp of icing sugar with a tiny dash of water and mix until it forms a paste - you don't want it to be too runny. Transfer the icing into a zip-lock bag or a piping bag.
Once the cookies are completely cooled, cut a small hole in the corner of the zip lock bag and decorate your gingerbread men by giving them a face and some buttons.
Leave them on the cooling rack until the icing has set and then transfer them into an air tight container.
And that's it! They're so quick and easy to make and also taste amazing! The perfect combo if you ask me..
I hope you love them as much as I do!