“After searching for a delicious frosted gingerbread cookie recipe for several years, I found this one,” said Kelly Crotty of La Vista, who submitted our 12th cookie. “It soon became a family favorite and I now make them for Christmas and other holidays as well. The blend of vanilla, lemon and butter extracts in the icing brings a perfect pairing with the gingerbread.”
Gingerbread Cutouts With Buttercream Icing
2/3 cup shortening (I use butter)
1 cup sugar
¼ cup molasses
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon each ground cinnamon, cloves and ginger
3 cups confectioner's sugar
1/3 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon lemon extract
¼ teaspoon butter extract
3 to 4 tablespoons milk
Cream shortening and sugar. Beat in egg and molasses. Combine flour, baking soda, salt and spices; gradually add to the creamed mixture and mix well. Refrigerate for 1 hour or overnight.
On a lightly floured surface, roll dough to ¼-inch thickness. Cut into desired shapes. Place on baking sheets covered in parchment paper. Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. To save time, I sometimes make round cookies out of 1-inch balls of dough.
For icing: beat sugar, butter and extracts in a bowl. Gradually stir in milk until smooth and thick. Tint the icing a cheery pink or green, if you like, and decorate with sprinkles. Yield: about 3½ dozen.
Test kitchen notes: These went together without a hitch. We used butter instead of shortening. They smelled wonderful as they baked, and cooled off quickly for frosting. And the frosting was delicious. We'll do these again.
— Staff writer Betsie Freeman with helper Laura Buddenberg