Archives for posts with tag: Christmas

Swedish Ginger Biscuits Recipe

Nothing beats the evocative smell of ginger biscuits. The recipe below is Swedish and makes the best biscuits I have come across. After baking and allowing them to cool, we have a family decorating session with plenty of icing and silver balls while Christmas carols are belted out. Later I use a needle to thread a loop on them and we hang them on the Christmas tree as they keep for weeks – that is if the children (mice?) don’t nibble them!

300g butter
450 castor sugar
6 tbsps. golden syrup
2 tbsps. cinnamon
1 tbsp. ground cloves
1 tbsp. ground ginger
1 tbsp. bicarbonate of soda
2 tbsps. cardamom
200ml water
900g plain flour

Cream the butter, sugar and syrup and beat in the flavouring – cinnamon, ground cloves, ginger, cardamom and bicarbonate of soda. Add the water and work in the flour, kneading well on a lightly floured surface. Place the dough into the fridge and allow it to rest for 24 hours. Roll out the dough and cut out shapes using biscuit cutters and place on a greased baking sheet. Bake at 200°C – 225°C for 4 – 5 minutes.
(I tend to halve the ingredients as it make a lot of dough. If too sticky, add extra flour.)

christmas12bchristmas12cchristmas12dButton wreaths, decorative biscuits, robins and stars. I am enjoying a little creativity with sewing and in the kitchen as well as in the studio. Below is my gift for festive events this year.

christmas12aWhether it is a drinks party, a Christmas coffee morning or a gift for a school teacher, it is always special to give something handmade.

Fill a Kilner jar with the layered cookie mix ingredients then attach a festive-shaped biscuit cutter and a card with the recipe for gingerbread cookies written out in your best handwriting.

Makes 25-30 cookies
For the cookie mix in a 1 litre Kilner jar
500g plain flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
185g soft light brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of ground allspice

Combine two-thirds of the flour with the baking powder, then tip this mixture into the jar. Shake gently to level out. Spoon in the brown sugar and roughly level out. Blend together the remaining amount of flour with the spices and carefully pour this on top of the layer of sugar.
Seal the jar securely and attach the cutter and the recipe card with brightly coloured twine or ribbon.

Write out the recipe below on a card to attach to the jar
Gingerbread Cookies
100g butter
115g golden syrup
1 large egg, beaten
Cookie mix
Icing sugar
•    Melt the butter in a large pan with the syrup.
•    Add the egg, then stir in the cookie mix to form a stiff dough.
•    Divide into two, flatten into discs and wrap in clingfilm. Chill for 20 minutes.
•    Roll out dough to 3mm thick, stamp out shapes and put on greased baking sheets. Make holes in the top to thread with cotton later.
•    Heat oven to 180°C and bake for 10 – 12 minutes until golden.
•    Cool on a wire rack; dust with icing sugar.

Recipe originally from Country Living Magazine December 2010.

Christmas 2012

Wishing all my readers a very blessed Christmas and a creative journey in 2013. Most years I write a Christmas letter to accompany my card whether it is emailed or posted but I thought this year my family would share ‘Two stars and a wish’ – two happy memories of the past year and one desire for next year.

Richard: Our cycle ride as a family to Padstow and a mushroom foraging course with Tessa. My wish next year is to make sandcastles on a beach in Cornwall.

Tessa: We had a magical holiday with my parents in Dartmouth to celebrate their ruby anniversary especially with the Red Arrow planes flying overhead. I am very excited that Richard and I have started running a parenting course as it is something that is close to our hearts. And my wish… looking forward to finding a new home as the one we had planned to buy fell through.

Nicholas (age 9): My birthday this year in Legoland and I loved going to watch ‘Skyfall’ with daddy. I am looking forward to going to Singapore if we go.

Isabel (age 6): My best things were making a decoupage box and making boats from junk on the beach. My wish is to see Zoe who lives in Africa.

Harriet (age 4): I made a snow globe and a bug hotel because it is nice for the bugs and they can hide in it and hibernate in it. I am going to Cornwall in April and I am very happy about that.