Gingerbread

Ingredients

Dry ingredients

400 g Bakers' Magic Gluten free flour

75 g Potato starch

15 g Ginger (powdered)

1 tsp Bicarb soda

110 g Brown sugar

Wet ingredients

150 g Butter

90 g Treacle

90 g Golden syrup

1 Egg

 

The amount of dough is sufficient to make a Gingerbread house (10 cm x 18 cm x 18 cm). Below is my first attempt at making a Gingerbread house from scratch. 

 

Method

In a bowl mix together the dry ingredients.

Melt the butter.

Add the treacle, golden syrup & egg to the melted butter & whisk (with a fork) to combine.

Pour the wet mix over the dry mix.

Mix until a uniform dough is formed. Transfer to a plastic bag & refrigerate for ~30 mins.

Rolling out the dough 

Bring the dough out of the fridge & allow it to soften (a little).

Put the dough on a sheet of baking paper or pastry mat. Bring it together with your hands & knead it until it is flexible.

Place the dough between two sheets of baking paper. To ensure the gingerbread is even in thickness follow this tip. Find two placements (dinner setting) place them on either side of the dough (my placemats are 4 mm high) or use a set of spacers. I used stainless steel spacers (5 mm) for all the gingerbread shown. The placemats can be on top of or underneath the pieces of baking paper. I find it easier to work with this dough when it is between two sheets of baking paper. When rolling out the dough ensure the rolling pin is wide enough to span the dough and part of the two top placemats. My rolling pin is large – 61 cm from handle to handle. Initially when rolling the pin may not necessarily rest on the placemats, however, when the dough is the same thickness as the placemats it will. At this stage the dough should be all the same thickness. 

Cutting & Cooking

Cracking of the Gingerbread occurs when the oven is too hot or the dough is too cold when it was put in the oven. The temperature of the oven is going to depend on how you want your Gingerbread to look. If the dough is too cold knead it for a little longer before cutting out the shapes. My advice would be to bake 1 or 2 to by themselves first before baking the remainder of the Gingerbread. 

My first batch of Gingerbread was baked at 180 C for 10 mins.

My second batch of Gingerbread Men (lying on top of the first batch) was baked at 130 C for 20 mins. When they are cooked at a low temperature they will not brown as much as those that are cooked at a higher temperature. The biscuit does not rise as much when it is baked at a low temperature so if you are going to make a Gingerbread House it may be best to bake it at a low temperature. 

Turn on the oven (between 130 C - 180 C). 

Line 2 trays with baking paper.

Gently lift off the top piece of baking paper, put it back down on the dough. Holding on to both sheets of baking paper on both sides of the dough gently flip the dough over. Doing this makes it easier to get the cut out dough off the baking paper. Lift off the top piece of baking paper - do not discard. 

Using a cutter of your choice cut out the Gingerbread and place them on a baking tray. If needed use a flat knife to help transfer the cut dough to the tray. When you have cut out as many shapes as possible bring the dough together and roll it out again between the two sheets of baking paper. This dough likes to be kneaded. Continue cutting out shapes in the newly rolled dough. Repeat until you can't cut out any more shapes. 

The length of time required to bake the Gingerbread will depend on the size of the cutter you have used, your oven & the temperature of your oven. As a guide check the Gingerbread after 10 mins.