We asked Mrs Campbell, Head of Home Economics, at The Mary Erskine School, and a keen baker in her spare time, if she had any Christmas recipes that our pupils could easily make at home with their families over the holidays.
We thought that gingerbread was a perfect suggestion, and the fact that you can cut it into any shape you like adds to the fun. You could even use them to make some Christmas tree decorations!
Once you have made yours please share a photo with us on social media using the hashtag #ESMSBakes
Ultimate Easy Gingerbread (courtesy of BBC Good Food)
100g salted butter
3 tbsp golden syrup
100g dark muscovado sugar
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tbsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
225g plain flour
50g icing sugar
Heat the butter, syrup and sugar together in a small pan until melted, stirring occasionally. Set aside to cool slightly.
Mix together the bicarb, ginger, cinnamon and flour in a large bowl. Pour in the buttery syrup mixture and stir to combine, then use your hands to bring together to form a dough. The dough will be soft at this point, but it will firm up in the fridge.
Put the dough on a sheet of baking parchment, shape into a rectangle, and lay another sheet of parchment on top of it. Roll the dough out to a thickness of ½cm. Transfer to a baking sheet to keep it flat, leaving the parchment in place, then chill in the fridge for 1 hr.
Heat the oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5 and line a large baking sheet with more baking parchment. Remove the dough from the fridge and cut out shapes using a cookie cutter. I used a star cutter, but you can choose any shape. You could also make some with smaller stars cut out of the centre to thread ribbon through and hang from a Christmas tree.
Place the shapes, spread apart, on the lined baking sheet, and bake for 10-12 mins. (Depending on the size of the cutters you use, they might need a few minutes more or less cooking in the oven). Leave to cool completely on the baking sheet.
Meanwhile, mix the icing sugar with 1-2 tbsp water – you want to create a consistency that’s thick and pipeable, and not too thin or it will run. Decorate the cooled biscuits with the icing using a piping bag with a thin nozzle.
Happy baking everyone!