I used to make these little Gingerbread Boys with Chocolate Pants every holiday season; by the hundreds. The past few years I've taken a break from baking them -- gingerbread boy burn-out. I continued to make the cookie dough, but in the shape of snowflakes instead, and covered in blue and white powdered sugar icing studded with silver French dragées.
But this year I decided it was time to resurrect the little boys with chocolate pants. I have never been a fan of soft, thick gingerbread cookies. This recipe makes a nice, crisp cookie if the dough is rolled thin.
• 1/2 cup sugar
• 1/2 cup molasses
• 1 1/2 teaspoon vinegar
• 1 egg, beaten
• 3 cups unbleached flour
• 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
• 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
• 1/2 teaspoon ginger
• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• 12 ounce bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips
• 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter plus additional if necessary
• Cinnamon Red Hots
• Powdered sugar icing -- made by mixing powdered sugar with milk or cream
1. In a large heavy saucepan, mix together butter, sugar and molasses with the vinegar. Bring to a boil. Cool. Add egg. Sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and ginger. Add the salt. Add dry ingredients to the molasses mixture. Mix well and chill. Roll out to 1/8-inch thickness. Cut out shapes. Bake at 375˚F for 8 to 12 minutes.
2. In a double boiler, over simmering water, melt the chocolate chips with the butter. You want a consistency similar to heavy cream. Dip cookies into the chocolate and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Drop a "cinnamon red hot" onto the chocolate. If a face is desired, mix together powdered (confectioners') sugar with a little milk or cream and using a tiny (#2) piping tip, make a face with dots and hair with a squiggle ;-)
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