Build your own gingerbread tree for this Christmas…
It is that time of the year, the time where everyone starts packing and getting ready to celebrate the holidays with their loved ones. Unfortunately, working in the hospitality industry means that it is time for you to forget about every single connection you have with the outer world. It is the time where you start working without even counting the extra hours you are doing. Some days might pass by during which you would happily stay 4 hours extra as you know if you left the work, it will only get worse tomorrow.
The not so funny part is that with all this busyness around you, and even if you would actually get distracted for a minute or two, you will still wake up one day and figure out that you will spend the holidays alone.
I have always been big on Christmas, since childhood. I didn’t really care about Santa being real or fake or about any gift I would just say Christmas meant holidays, days off, it meant spending these days stuck next to the warmers toasting bread and having family breakfast.
What is your Favourite Christmas Gift?
The greatest gift I could have asked for during the festive season when I was in school was snow. Waking up at 6 am to find my dad still awake checking the streets and God I can’t describe the feeling when he used to say “Baba go back to bed it is snowing there is no school today” these words were stronger than any energy drink I can drink right now.
For this year and even if I won’t be able to travel and be home, we still decided to work on our own countdown to Christmas. Sharing every day one of our favorite Christmas and festive desserts.
I initially started thinking that I would bake a cookie for each colleague at work. Well, after doing the math I found out that by this I would be actually baking over 500 cookies or whatever I will be doing. Looking at these calculations, I decided to stick only to the countdown, and instead of sharing cookies with the entire hotel, I will only restrict the spreading of Joy to my team only, which brings it down to 115 cookies to be baked only.
To start with the countdown I decided to share the recipe of Gingerbread dough and sugar icing. Usually, this recipe would be used to make gingerbread house but I have decided for this year I would switch to small star trees and basic royal icing with some icing sugar for dusting.
Let’s start baking…
For the Gingerbread dough
Start by bringing the milk and sugar to a boil then remove from the heat, add in the honey. Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl mix all the dry ingredients.
Add all the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients. Add in the egg yolk and mix. Knead the dough for 5-6 minutes. Once the dough is one rest it for half an hour.
Roll the dough to 5-6 mm thickness and cut to the desired shape. Bake at 180 C till golden in color around 8 min.
For the Royal Icing
Start by mixing the icing sugar with the egg white using a paddle attachment. Add the juice to give strength to the mixture, the vanilla to give a nice flavor. Add in any desired coloring as well.
You can test the icing if it is ready or not by making a beak if it stays stable that means the icing is read if not, then it needs more mixing.
Cool the baked cookies. Use the icing as a glue to stick the pieces to each other. Here you need to be very quick and careful. The icing dries out very fast.
While working with the icing any left in the bowl should be covered with a wet towel till used or needed. Make sure the icing doesn’t stay exposed to air, otherwise it will all dry out and becomes a big dry lump.
The reason I used vanilla powder here and not essence or vanilla pod is that in here you want the icing to keep it is shining royal white color.
Gingerbread dough with Royal icing
- 625 grams Honey
- 225 grams Sugar
- 125 grams Milk
- 5 grams Baking Soda
- 15 grams Ginger powder
- 5 grams Cinnamon Powder
- 1 pc Lemon Zest
- 1 pc Orange Zest
- 3 Pcs Egg Yolk
- 1250 grams Flour
- 1000 grams Icing Sugar
- 200 grams Egg White
- 10 grams Lemon juice
- 5 grams Vanilla Powder
For the Dough
- Boil milk and sugar and remove from the heat, add in the honey.
- Add all the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients.
- Add the egg yolk
- Rest the dough little bit
- Roll the dough to 5 – 6 mm and cut the desired shape.
- Bake at 180C till golden color for around 8 minutes.
- Mix the icing sugar with the egg white using a paddle attachment.
- Add the juice to give strength to the mixture.
- Add the vanilla to give a nice flavor.
- You can test the icing if it is ready or not by making a beak if it stays stable that means the icing is read if not, then it needs more mixing.