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Hi I am new here and still kinda new to the cookie world. I have been learning to make cookies as therapy for my disability and it’s been so fun.

I was hoping somebody could help me with a recipe for a gingerbread cookie that is still tender to eat but won’t spread and lose its shape and become a ballon 😂. I love making gingerbread girls and pyo  with my daughter for her to paint and decorate. Her fav is gingerbread but I can’t find a recipe that won’t spread or isn’t hard as a jolly rancher. Thank you for any ideas you could share.

I wasn’t sure if Mrs Julia Usher’s 2d cookie recipe is what I should be using? I don’t make any fancy cookies; just loving all the fun cookie cutters and learning decorating techniques with royal icing. It just breaks my heat when I bake a cookie that looks nothing like the cutter. 🤣

Last edited by Cookie Miner
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My recipe (https://juliausher.com/cutout_cookie_gingerbread/) is relatively non-spreading even if you don't reduce the leavening (as I often do when I really don't want any spread), as long as you roll it relatively thin. I am not sure it will meet your requirement of being "tender" as it tends to be a little crunchy, but if you bake it less long and roll it thicker, it may work for you. People's preferences  are very subjective, so my feeling is it's best to try a bunch of recipes to find one you like. Note, however, that cookies that retain their shape often have relatively more flour and less leavening so they will inherently be less tender than those that spread more - it is a fine balance between achieving softness and no spreading.

Hi @Cookie Miner
I've found that every country here on earth has a different definition of "gingerbread". There are so many different recipes! Unfortunately, I don't know your recipe either, but maybe it will help to use a little less raising agent for your recipe and put the cookies and baking sheet in the freezer for 10 minutes. Preheat the oven to the desired number of degrees and then put the "frozen" tray with the cookies in the oven. So they generally bake faster than they can spread...
I hope it help??

...It just occurred to me that if you have a large metal gingerbread man cutter, you can also bake the gingerbread in the mold. Disadvantage: The finished gingerbread man then has a typical baking edge... @Cookie Miner

Thank you all so much for the feedback! I truly appreciate it; I have dozens of recipes but I have never tried to lessen the leavening which is usually baking soda for the ones I use. I am definitely going to try Mrs Ushers recipe and roll it a bit thicker as suggested. I know everybody has such a different preference to gingerbread I love all gingerbread. but as the years have gone on I can’t really swallow the ones that are on the crunchy side things have to be a bit more soft and chewy I guess for me which just complicates things 😂 I am really interested in trying the frozen cookie tray I’ve never done that that sounds like a wonderful tip thank you!

@Cookie Miner, I love your cookie-hardness sentiment of  gingerbread cookies being "hard as a jolly rancher"!  May I suggest considering the desired cookie hardness after you have had a chance to apply icing flooding (if that is a part of your decorating plans).

Since I am currently working with glaze icing for flooding and decorating in general, I find that crunchy cookies end up softer overall after the application of glaze flooding (and dried at room temps).

Note that the density of the cookie will still be there after flooding, and I think the general gingerbread cookie will be denser than a light butter sugar recipe.   You may want to consider the hardness as something that can be adjusted based on how you are decorating it.

For the same hard and crunchy cookie, you may consider comparing how it ends up with a glaze vs a royal icing flood.

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