Christmas Spiced Gingerbread
The home of Christmas is Finland, and Finns have their own range of beloved traditional Christmas baked goods. I grew up with these every Christmas, always home made, and I am really excited to share them. Taken in the most part from Koti Ruoka, the famous mainstream Finnish cooking bible and my grandmothers old cookery notes.
200g butter, 200g light brown sugar, 150ml golden syrup, 100ml double cream, 450g plain flour, 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp ground cloves, 1 tsp allspice, 1/5 tsp ground ginger
Melt the butter in a pan. Once the butter has melted add the sugar, cream, spices and syrup and combine well – make sure the spices do not remain in small lumps. Sift the bicarbonate of soda into the flour and add it to the butter mixture using a wooden spoon until everything is well combined forming a thick dough. Put it into the fridge for use the next day. Once taken out of the fridge fully chilled it will be very solid, but scrape off small spoonfuls and work it with your hands and then onto a floured surface – it will soon become pliable and ready to roll. roll out to a thickness of max around a quarter of a centimetre otherwise it will puff up and your shapes will become unrecognisable.
Bake in a preheated oven of around 180 degrees celsius for around 8 – 10 minutes as soon as they have turned a dark gingerbread colour – keep an eye on them.