Yield: 66 cookies
|5 cups||Unsifted all-purpose flour|
|2 teaspoons||Ground cinnamon|
|2 teaspoons||Ground ginger|
|½ teaspoon||Ground cloves|
|1 cup||Vegetable shortening or margarine|
|1 cup||Light molasses|
1. On waxed paper, combine flour, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and salt.
2. In large bowl, with electric mixer, beat shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in molasses and egg. Stir in flour mixture to make a stiff dough. Divide dough into thirds; wrap with plastic wrap.
Refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 3 days before using.
3. Heat oven to 350'F. For cut-out cookies, cover 2 or 3 large baking sheets with aluminum foil or baking parchment paper. If making cookie molds, prepare molds following manufacturer's directions.
4. For cut cookies, on prepared sheet, roll out cookie dough, one third at a time, to a 14 by 11-inch rectangle, about ⅛-inch thick.
Using patterns as a guide or cookie cutters, cut out as many pieces as possible, leaving ½ inch between pieces. Lift off dough trimmings and reserve to roll out later. If hanging cookies, make holes in cookies using a straw or skewer.
5. For molded cookies, take a piece of dough and press it firmly and evenly into prepared mold. Using rolling pin, roll over dough to fill mold evenly. Using a sawing motion with a sharp knife, trim the back of cookie so it is flush with the mold. Unmold cookie mold onto prepared sheet following manufacturer's directions.
6. Bake small gingerbread pieces 8 to 10 minutes, 12 to 15 minutes for larger pieces, or 15 to 20 minutes for the molds. Cookies should be firm and golden brown. Transfer cookies to wire racks; cool completely before decorating. Store cookies in airtight containers.
MAKES THREE 14 BY 11-INCH RECTANGLES OF GINGERBREAD OR ABOUT SIXTY-SIX (3-INCH) COOKIES.
Country Living Holidays/92 Scanned & fixed by Di Pahl & <gg>