These decorative gingerbread biscuits are perfect for every season; whether you are making snowflakes at Christmas time to give as gifts to family, or making love hearts for Valentine’s Day, you can’t go wrong.
This royal icing is the perfect consistency for piping intricate details, or get the kids involved to make their own designs!
Makes 8–12 (depending on the size of your cutter)
For the biscuits
- 125g vegan butter
- 100g dark muscovado sugar
- 50g golden syrup
- 300g plain flour
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 heaped tbsp ground ginger
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
For the royal icing
- 6 tbsp aquafaba (see notes)
- ¼ tsp cream of tartar
- 250g icing sugar
- Food colouring (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC fan. Line two baking trays with baking parchment.
- Put the butter, dark muscovado sugar and golden syrup in a saucepan over a low–medium heat until the butter is melted.
- Sift the flour, bicarbonate of soda, ginger and cinnamon into a large bowl and mix. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix until a dough is formed.
- Split the dough in half and roll one half out on a flour-dusted surface—or between two sheets of baking parchment—until it is around 5mm thick. Cut out whatever shape you’d like the biscuits to be (I used a large star cutter) and transfer them to a lined baking tray. Gather up the excess and re-roll until you have a full tray of biscuits. Repeat with the second half of the dough to fill the other baking tray.
- Bake for 8–12 minutes until the biscuits feel firm—they will set as they cool.
- For the royal icing, put the aquafaba and cream of tartar in the bowl of a stand mixer, if you have one—or into a large mixing bowl if you are using an electric hand whisk—and whisk on high until it reaches stiff peaks (meaning it doesn’t slide about in the bowl when tipped upside down.) Once it reaches this stage, add the icing sugar, a tablespoon at a time, until you have a stiff glossy icing. Divide the icing into bowls and colour as desired or leave it white.
- Place the icing into piping bags and decorate the cooled gingerbread biscuits however you like! Enjoy!
This batch of royal icing makes more than enough to decorate the biscuits, so you can play around with loads of designs.
Aquafaba is the liquid from a can of chickpeas. There are a few key tips to working with aquafaba, one being that the bowl and whisk must be completely clean and grease-free for it to whip up properly. To ensure this, I always get a little apple cider vinegar on a piece of kitchen paper and wipe it round the bowl and the whisk to remove any dirt. Secondly, some aquafaba is thicker than others. The ideal liquid is a thick, light brown colour, so if you have access to a slightly fancier brand, I would recommend you try that. You can also buy aquafaba that is pre-packaged, which I tend to buy if I’m making a pavlova as I know it is nice and thick. If you do find your aquafaba is too liquid, you can place it in a pan over a medium heat and reduce it down a little to remove some of the excess liquid—just make sure you let it cool again before using. Finally, cream of tartar really helps the aquafaba to whip to stiff peaks and is generally available in all supermarkets.
Images and text from Simply Vegan Baking by Freya Cox, photography by Clare Winfield. Murdoch Books RRP $39.99.
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