Doctor's Review: Medicine on the Move

October 23, 2017

© France Ruffenach

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Soft glazed gingerbread

This dough makes a perfect soft cookie, which also keeps the impression from an antique pin. The resulting cookies look like tiles, with a simple water and icing sugar glaze settling into the grooves and turning white from the crystallization of the sugar. The glaze seals in moisture and gives the cookies extra sweetness.


3¾ c. (930 ml) all-purpose flour
1 tbsp. (15 ml) cocoa powder
4 tsp. (20 ml) ground ginger
1½ tsp. (7.5 ml) ground cloves
2 tsp. (10 ml) ground cinnamon
½ tsp. (2.5 ml) baking soda
1 tsp. (5 ml) salt
1¼ tsp. (6.25 ml) ground black pepper
1 c. (225 g) unsalted butter
¾ c. (180 ml) plus 2 tbsp. (30 ml) granulated sugar
1 large egg
½ c. (125 ml) dark molasses
2 tbsp. (30 ml) light corn syrup
1 c. (250 ml) icing sugar
2 tbsp. (30 ml) water


Stir together the flour, cocoa powder, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, baking soda, salt and pepper in a mixing bowl. Set aside. Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-high until creamy. Slowly add the granulated sugar and mix on medium until smooth and soft. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Add the egg and mix well.

Add the molasses and corn syrup and beat until incorporated. Stop the mixer again and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the flour mixture and beat on low until a dough that pulls away from the sides of the bowl forms and all the ingredients are well incorporated. Remove the dough from the bowl, flatten it on a large piece of plastic wrap into a rectangle 1 inch (2.5 cm) thick, cover with the wrap and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Unwrap the dough and place it on a floured work surface. If using a mold with a design, roll out the dough to 1/3 inch (8 mm) thick, lightly dust the top with flour, press your mold over the dough and then cut out the shapes with a small knife and place on the prepared sheet, spacing them 1 inch (2.5 cm) apart.

Alternatively, using the mold as a guide, cut around it with a small knife, flip the mold over so the design is facing you and place the dough over it, pressing it into the design. Unmold the shapes onto the prepared sheet, leaving space between them.

If using a patterned rolling pin, lightly dust the lined baking sheet with flour and transfer the dough to the pan. Dust the top of the dough with flour and roll it into a rectangle 1/3 inch (8 mm) thick with a plain pin. Then, using the patterned pin, roll over the dough with enough pressure to ensure a clear impression of the design. Trim the edges with a small knife. It’s not necessary to cut into smaller sizes before baking.

Bake the cookies until lightly golden along the sides, but still soft to the touch in the centers, 7 to 15 minutes. The timing will depend on the size of the cookies.

While the cookies are baking, prepare the glaze. Sift the icing sugar before combining it with the water to ensure a smooth glaze. Then, in a small bowl, whisk together the sugar and water until smooth.

When the cookies are ready, remove from the oven and let cool until still slightly warm. Using even strokes, brush a light coat of glaze on top of each. Let the cookies cool completely. When the glaze dries, it should leave a shiny, opaque finish.

If you’ve used a patterned pin to make a single large plaque, cut into the desired cookie sizes: 1½ by 4 inches (3.75 by 10 cm) makes a nice size.

The cookies will keep in an airtight container in a cool place for 2 weeks. They don’t freeze well because the glaze becomes watery when thawed. Makes 12 to 20 cookies.

This article was accurate when it was published. Please confirm rates and details directly with the companies in question.

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