HO HO HO and its a very Merry Christmas with only 11 days remaining to the big day. And it's another year of the Annual partaking in the Food Bloggers Cookie Swap.
A couple of months ago I have made the decision along with my partner to turn my part-time Cookie Business into a Fulltime Working At Home Mum (WAHM) Business, and since then it has been super duper uber crazy busy! Parties, Events, Corporate Orders and Market Days have kept me run off my feet every single week. So it was definitely a squeeze to get the 36 cookies required completed for the swap given I insist on producing decorated cookies. AND as usual my definition of a Christmas Cookie is definitely a gingerbread variety... and I have to say I did excel as far as taste for my family, they deemed it a great look and tasting cookie all round. Even my Miss 4 ate several and even insisted on taking a 'doggy bag' of them to her Nanny's house on her sleepover. They did puff nicely the first roll out of each lot of dough, a note is to knead the dough back together well before re-rolling it to avoid distortion and shrinkage in cutter shapes.
Maple Pumpkin Gingerbread Cookies
1/4 cup Butter - softened
1/4 cup Brown Sugar - firmly packed
2 Tbsp Molasses
1/2 cup Maple Syrup
1/2 cup FRESH Pumpkin Puree
1/4 cup Water
3 1/2 cups all-purpose Flour
1 1/2 tsp Ground Ginger
1 tsp Bi-Carb (Baking) Soda
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Ground Nutmeg
1/4 tsp Cloves
1/4 tsp Ground Black Pepper
Place pumpkin diced into a saucepan of water and boil until soft, drain and put through the food processer until a puree.
Place butter and sugar in the electric mixer and mix until light and fluffy. Then add the egg and combine well.
Add in the molasses, maple syrup, pumpkin and water and mix well on medium.
In a separate bowl sift together the dry ingredients and whisk them through so the raising agent is spread throughout. Then add all at once to the wet/or pumpkin mixture in the electric mixer with dough hook. Mix on low speed until a ball of pliable dough.
Take the dough out of the bowl and knead it on a floured surface. Make 2 large discs of dough and put in glad wrap/cling film and place in the fridge for 4 hours (or overnight).
To Make Cookies :Pre-heat over to 160 degrees.
Remove from the fridge, allow to sit until the dough is rollable, roll out the disc and use cookie cutters to cut out your cookies, place them on a lined cookie tray.
Bake for 15 minutes - check for golden colour as they may need more time depending on your oven.
You can decorate how you wish, I used Royal Icing.
I credit the Blogger Courtney from Sweet Tooth Sweet Life for these gorgeous cookies :
I thought these were easy and great, but I did opt to make my own Pumpkin Puree just because I hate pumpkin from a can, I don't think it tastes the same at all, plus you avoid unnecessary preservatives.
I have received 3 Cookie Packages from my fellow Cookie Swappers, their details and pics are below, so far I have nibbled at each package and they taste great! Thank you so much lovely ladies.
Thank you and my Cookie Bakers for 2013 were :Alicia from The Kitchen and the Camera :
Kate from The Cook's Companion Challenge :
Giulia from Love At Every Bite :
If you missed out this year but don't want to miss out in 2014, just sign up with your email here so you get the notifications when the swap is taking names next year : http://eepurl.com/qCABj