Ninjabread Men – Gingerbread with a Kick – WA-GA!

Posted by on Sep 12, 2012 in Cookies, Food Journal, Holidays

Ninjabread Men – Gingerbread with a Kick – WA-GA!

Ninjabread Men (recipe follows) – Last year I was surfing around on Amazon and I came across the coolest thing ever. Ninjabread Man Cookie Cutters. I know, super cool, right? So, upon finding said cookie cutters, I placed them in my Amazon shopping cart and much to my dismay I was rejected. Has this ever happened to you? You’re all excited about some cute purchase and snatch, it’s stolen out of your cart because you didn’t check out quick enough and the last one sold. It’s rare, I know, but it’s happened to me twice. That’s right twice. So, anyway. This year, I was super determined to get my cookie cutters. I actually thought about them several times during the year. (What’s wrong with me)?  And the other day, I was on Amazon again and I happened to remember my beloved ninjabread man cookie cutters so I put in my search and guess what – OH YEAH, they were available. P.S. on that though, one of the sellers was already down to 2 sets and this is September. So I jumped on it and ordered my very own set. And, (sing this part like a bratty kid) ♪ they came in the mail on Wednesday, they came in the mail on Wednesday, they came in the mail on Wednesday♪, Yay! I’m so happy! Now, I have my inspiration for a new recipe. So,  I’ve been working on this for 2 days now and I have come up with this -  Ninjabread Men – Gingerbread with a Kick – WA-GA (that’s my kick sound like in a video game or on a Karate movie). And what do I mean by gingerbread with a kick? What is the difference between gingerbread men and Ninjabread men? Ninjabread men have a kick – YEAH! At least that’s how I envision them. Oh, that’s not a good explanation. What I mean to say is that the Ninjabread men are spicy. MMMMMM, spicy and sweet together in a cookie at last. Don’t worry everyone, fear not the spicy cookie, because they are killer! LOL, killer, get it killer, because they’re ninjabread men, nnninjabread men. This next line is to be read in a high pitched and slow voice ready -  I’mmm funnnyyy! So, let’s bake people! Woooooh!

 Ingredients

Make sure you read the instructions before you start!
5 cups AP flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
4 teaspoons ginger (dried, ground)
2 teaspoons cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon mace
In a separate bowl
16 Tablespoons (2 sticks) butter, at room temperature

2/3 cup brown sugar (Light or dark will work, but dark will add more flavor).
2 large eggs
2/3 cup molasses

Instructions

1. In a small bowl, mix together your dry ingredients (the flour, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, salt, baking soda, black pepper, cayenne and mace)
2. In a separate and larger bowl, cream together the butter and sugar.
3. Add the eggs and mix well.
4. Add 1/3 of your dry ingredients and mix.
5. Add half of the molasses and mix. Scrape your bowl and paddle/beaters.
6. Add another 1/3 of your dry ingredients and mix. Scrape the bowl and paddle/beaters.
7. Add the other of half of the molasses and mix. Scrape the bowl and paddle/beaters.
8. And finally, add the remainder of the dry mix and mix it. Remove the dough from the bowl.
9. Divide your dough into four equal pieces. Shape and flatten each of your four pieces into disks that are about one inch thick. Wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and place them in an airtight container (like a gallon baggie or a plastic container).
10. Place them in the refrigerator for at least four hours and up to two days. Remember, the longer
you let your dough set the more flavor it will have, so, give the spices a chance to do their job :). You can also freeze your dough at this point for up to three months. This is a great way to get a jump start on all of those Christmas Cookies that you’ll be baking!
11. When you are ready to bake your Ninjabread Men – WA-GA, pre-heat your oven to 350°F.
12. Remove one disk of dough from the refrigerator. Unwrap it and place it on a well floured surface. Also, be sure to put flour on your rolling pen, cookie cutters, and bench knife or spatula.
13. Roll your Gingerbread, make that Ninjabread Men out to about 1/4 inch thick.
14. Use a floured Ninjabread Man cookie cutter to cut your cookie dough into ninja shapes (isn’t this fun (punch, kick – WA-GA))! You can take all the dough scraps and press them together and re-roll them.
15. Carefully, very, very carefully, move your ninjas to a prepared cookie sheet. I use a bench knife to move mine, you can also use a spatula. This helps them keep their shape. I’m using my silpat to bake mine on, but you can also use parchment paper (do not use any grease, butter or cooking spray, only the parchment or silpat).
16. Bake at 350°F for 9-11 minutes. They should look dull and dry when they’re done. DO NOT OVER-BAKE! They will dry out super easy, so be careful! They should be soft when they’re done. If they come out crispy, you baked them too long – unless you like them crispy, then, good job!
17. Slide the papers onto your cooling racks to cool your little ninjas. Again, be careful!
18. When they are totally cool (like me), you can decorate them. I’m doing mine with butter-cream and fondant on top just so they can have they’re little ninja suits, but you can use royal icing or just butter-cream or raisins or candy – the list goes on and on. Use your imagination and have fun – WA-GA! *If you’d like to see how I did my decorating, I invite you to watch the “how-to” video at the bottom.
19. Oh, you can store these in a airtight container between sheets of parchment paper for a couple of days. If you don’t want your decoration to smear, use the royal icing because it will harden. Also, if you do make royal icing, I recommend using pasteurized egg whites or coddling your eggs. WA-GA – that’s just plain fun, seriously, try it!

Spiced Gingerbread Cookies (Ninjabread)

Please enjoy this “how-to” video!


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