Gingerbread men with minimal sugar! The dough is sweetened with molasses and banana, and no sugar-fuelled children makes the party all the sweeter……. ask any Teddy Bear.
Serves: Recipe makes 25-30 depending on size
Seaweeds used: nori
- 115g (4oz) butter, softened
- 85g (2 generous tablespoons) molasses
- 1 ripe very large banana or 2 medium bananas
- 1 egg, beaten
- 2 teaspoons ginger powder
- 2 teaspoons allspice
- 1-2 tablespoons nori, ground or flaked
- 1 tablespoon good quality cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 325g (11oz) white spelt flour plus extra for kneading and rolling
variation: use half ground almonds and half white Spelt flour
Good quality dark chocolate drops and buttons and sultanas
- Place the softened butter and molasses in a large mixing bowl and cream with a fork or wooden spoon.
- Mash the banana and add to the mixture with the egg. Mix well together.
- Add the spices, seaweeds and sifted cocoa powder and mix well. Add the baking powder to the flour. Work in ¼ of the flour with a wooden spoon until well combined. Add the next ¼ and work until also well combined. Get your little helpers to assist with the mixing and kneading.
- Tip in the remaining weighed flour and use your hands to gather into a dough. You may need to add a little extra flour to rub all the dough from your hands and from the side of the bowl. Once all the dough is together in a ball, knead lightly. Add flour if necessary so that there is no stickiness. Wrap in Clingfilm and chill in the fridge for 2 hours or overnight.
- Unwrap and leave for 20 minutes to soften a little so it will be easy to roll out.
- Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/ 350°F /Gas 4. Grease some baking trays.
Roll the dough to a thickness of 4 to 5mm (¼ inch). Cut into lots of shapes with a variety of cutters. Decorate. Bake large shapes together if possible, as they need a bit longer in the oven. Small thin biscuits will cook very quickly. Generally 10 to 12 minutes will cook all sizes but watch them carefully – they burn easily. Cool on the baking trays to firm up and then transfer to a wire tray.