Gingerbread People and Prizes!

The wonderful people over at 3 Seas Literary are running a Holiday Recipe Scavenger Hunt. There are prizes. Money prizes. So check it out! I’m adding to the contest with my recipe for gingerbread people. You can find the recipe, along with a chance to win $25 Amazon Gift Card at the bottom of this post.

Why gingerbread? No matter what you celebrate during the season, the holidays are all about family traditions. We celebrate Christmas. If you’ve been around this blog before you might have seen my post on Christmas Tags. Classic. An even better tradition involves the use of copious amounts of powdered sugar, food coloring, candy, and my family’s messed up imaginations. That’s right, anyone can make an ordinary gingerbread man, with his cute little buttons and his lame taunts about his excessive speed. But my family likes to construct gingerbread people who tell their own unique story. Like these guys….

As always, stay classy, Stewart kids. The recipe below isn’t all you’ll need to make these cookies. All sorts of other ingredients get used to create the right gingerbread man/woman/thing. The normal candy like M&M’s, Red Hots, coconut, tiny colored marshmallows, and also stuff that has no place near a gingerbread cookie. Like my daughter’s saliva. And Mustard. Santa’s watching, so remember to post warnings on inedible gingerbread.

Some cookies shouldn’t be eaten because of weird ingredients, but some people don’t like you to eat their cookies, because they are masterpieces. Those are the cookies that get judged. Hey, what’s a family tradition without competition? People take this thing seriously. My family spends a great deal of time making their cookies look spectacular. One cookie is the overall winner, but everyone wins in this contest. In the end, we make up awards. Like an award for the cookie with the most chocolate or cookie that looks the most like a dead president. You get the picture.

The last ingredient you’ll need for this tradition is stamina. Things are going to get messy. Your wine will have frosting on it. Your fingers will start to go stiff. The process will feel less like fun and more like an assembly line of bakers, frosting makers, and cookie decorators. As the day wears on people just slap the ingredients together. Like my adorable husband, pictured here, who is our expert frosting maker. He looks so cute all dusted with sugar.

It’s a marathon, kids.  Pace yourselves.

You can always tell the cookies made at the end of the day, because they look like a Jackson Pollock. They are smeared with whatever colored frosting is left over and have candy dumped on them as if by a drunk elf. So how can you get in on this crazy fun? Well, follow the gingerbread recipe below, double or triple it, and free up your imagination. And an entire day. I want to see blood, sweat, and tears on those cookies! And blue ribbons. You can post your pictures on my Facebook. Enjoy your Christmas or whatever holiday you celebrate. Cookies go good with everything. Even Sauvignon blanc. Don’t forget to pop over and comment on my author page on FB for a chance to win a $25 gift card! And for bigger prizes, check out the 3 Seas FB Page!

 Brown Sugar: ¾ Cup (Double or triple for a really good time!)
Butter: 1 Stick
Eggs: 2 Large
Salt: ½ Teaspoon
Dark Molasses: ¼ Cup
All-Purpose Flour: 3 ¾ Cups
Ground Ginger: 2 Teaspoons
Baking Soda: 1 ½ Teaspoon
 Nutmeg: ½ Teaspoon
Powdered Sugar: 1 Cup
Heavy Cream: 2 Tablespoons
Sour Cream: 1 Tablespoon
Butter: 2 Tablespoons
Food Coloring: Lots!

At low speed mix the sugar and butter until they are yellow goodness. Drop in the eggs. Blend. Add molasses. Blend. At this point the ingredients look like something someone would have to force feed you. Not to worry, it will all work out in the end. In a separate bowl add your dry ingredients. Mix them together by hand. Add them to the other ingredients with the blender on low. Do this slowly. Trust me on this. Flour flies. After you’re done, put the stuff in a bowl covered with plastic wrap and stick it in the refrigerator for an hour. You can also make the recipe the night before and leave the ingredients in the fridge overnight. My daughter swears the dough chilling overnight is much better. Basically, you just want the dough to be chilled enough to work with. When you’re done this step, preheat the over to 350 degrees F. Take a handful of dough, roll it out until about 1/8 inch thick. Some people like it to be thicker, some thinner. Find your own way here. Once rolled out, cut out the shapes with cookie cutters or use your own mad skills to make shapes. Bake. Frost. Create. Have fun!!

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