Season’s mood: with ginger flavor

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It’s holiday season again! The weather gets a bit colder, the clothes a bit warmer and the food more tempting, especially the Christmas cookies. Everybody is already expecting the snow, Santa Claus and the nights around the fireplace with a cup of tea or hot chocolate.

In the end of the tense year, we all look forward to the winter holidays, which gather all the family members in our cozy and warm homes. This is the time when we all balance out what we have achieved during the year, what is yet to be done and what would be our new year’s resolutions. This is also the time of the purest wishes and hopes, the time of the Christmas miracles.

The spirit is already spread at Varna University of Management as well. A major part of us is our Culinary Arts Institute, which of course, is rich in recipes for the Christmas and New Year’s tables. The chef instructors gave a hint to one of them for classical Christmas sweets. What a Christmas would be without Gingerbread cookies? Our chefs shared their secret for those delicious temptations with which you can also make a whole ginger bread house.

The needed ingredients are:
Granulated sugar – 530 g
Brown sugar – 380 g
Molasses – 115 g
Shortening – 300 g
Salt – 9-10 g
Baking soda – 13 g
Eggs – 300 g (5 eggs)
Pastry flour – 980 kg
Ginger – 4 g
Cinnamon – 1 small pinch to taste

For the glue:
Egg whites – 1
Powder sugar – 250 g
Lemon juice – 10 ml

The procedure:

First, the sugar, molasses, shortening, salt and baking soda should be mixed altogether at a medium speed. To avoid going to the supermarket searching specifically for “shortening”, you can just combine equal quantity of butter and margarine (so 150 g of each) and you will have the same fine result.

Once you have mixed the above ingredients, add the eggs and blend. All this should be done in a scraping bowl in order to keep the mix.

Once ready, sift the flour, ginger and cinnamon together. Keep mixing them till smooth, but do not over mix. You should get a dough – refrigerate it.

Then roll it out to 6-8 mm thickness and you are ready to cut the cookies, or using a template and an exacto knife – to cut out the house pieces.

Bake at 170˚C until cooked and then let it air dry overnight at room temperature.

If you have taken the challenge to “build” your own ginger bread house, you will need to mix your glue out of egg whites, powder sugar and lemon juice. You can use a box or something similar to help you support the walls of your Christmas house while the glue is drying.

And, very important, every holiday recipe needs a pinch of your holiday mood to be perfect.

Enjoy your holidays!