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How To Make Gingerbread Halloween Biscuits In An Aga Range Cooker

 

Halloween Chocolate Gingerbread - ghoulish gremlins, menacing mummies, spooky spirits, toothy tarantula!... what will you make!

"Classic gingerbread men are given a spooky Halloween twist! I’ve adapted my classic gingerbread recipe by substituting some of the flour with cocoa powder to give these skeletons and mummies a darker colour – chocolate and ginger go so well together and I’ve added a little extra seasonal spice with nutmeg and cinnamon." Antonia

Heavy duty baking tray large size baking tray suitable for Aga range cookers

You can use any shape of cookie cutter for these and decorate them as you wish – stars and snowflakes are lovely at Christmas. Timings will vary depending on the size of your biscuits so adjust accordingly and keep a close eye on them!

Makes 20 large gingerbread men

You may need...

"What a fantastic and sturdy piece of kit - ideal for use with the Aga. It is pre-seasoned so has a naturally non-stick surface - biscuits came off easily with no crumbs left on the tray. It has a very handy raised lip at one end which makes it so much easier to grasp when lifting out of the ovens - what a great idea. Made from iron, it holds heat very well so would be ideal for pre-heating for when you wish to achieve a nice crisp base (e.g. a pizza)." Antonia

Ingredients:

  • 300g Plain flour
  • 50g Cocoa powder
  • 1tsp Bicarbonate of soda
  • 1tsp Ground ginger
  • 1tsp Cinnamon
  • ½ tsp Ground nutmeg
  • 125g Softened butter
  • 175g Light muscavado sugar
  • 1 Egg (free range of course!)
  • 4 tbsp Treacle (oil your spoon so it slips off!)

Spook it up! The toppings - 

  • royal icing
  • edible eyes
  • black ‘edible’ pen

Right, lets get cooking!

  1. Sieve the flour, cocoa, spices and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl.In a second bowl, cream together the butter and sugar. I do this in a stand mixer. Mix in the egg and treacle and, finally, add the dry ingredients and beat until well combined.
  2. Bring the dough together and pat into a disc. Wrap in cling film and place in the fridge to firm up for approximately 20 minutes.
  3. Divide the dough into 2 pieces, leaving one in the fridge. Roll out the dough on a floured surface – approximately 5mm thick. Cut out shapes using a cookie cutter and place onto a non-stick baking sheet or a baking sheet lined with a silicone baking sheet.
  4. In a 3 or 4 oven Aga – slide the baking sheet onto the bottom runners and bake for 10 minutes. The biscuits will still feel soft to the touch but will be dry on top. Remove from oven and leave to cool on baking sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
  5. In a 2 oven Aga –slide the baking sheet onto the bottom runners with the cold shelf on the second runners. Bake for 8-10 minutes. The biscuits will still feel soft to the touch but will be dry on top. Remove from oven and leave to cool on baking sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
  6. Repeat with remaining dough!
  7. Once completely cool, pipe the skeleton biscuits with white icing for the bones and stick ‘edible’ eyes in position. Use a black ‘edible’ pen to create a mouth. For the mummies, stick eyes in position using a little icing and then pipe stripes all over the body.

Antonia's Tips:

Variation: If you don’t have a gingerbread man cutter, use a round cutter and decorate with fondant icing to make ‘mummy’ faces. Spread with royal icing and stick on the eyes. Cut thin strips of fondant icing and stick across the biscuit.

The biscuits will be quite soft when you remove them from the oven but don’t be tempted to cook them for longer. They harden up as they cool and are best when a little crisp at the edges and slightly chewy in the centre.

Blake and Bull’s ‘fits on runners’ baking sheet from Netherton Foundry is ideal for biscuit baking. It has a natural non-stick surface, retains heat beautifully and has a raised lip which makes it easy to remove from the ovens.

This fun family recipe has been scribed and tested by community member Antonia, who is a hard working mum with two boys. Her recipes are trialed in her much loved Aga range cooker and devoured by her family, allowing Antonia to provide accurate tips and advice on how to make the dishes a success! Go check her work out! She is a country girl, happily surrounded by an excitable Lab, her dear husband, two boys and the Cotswolds. 

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