You know you’re in love when your heart’s aflutter waiting to see if you’ll get a big gaudy gingerbread heart from the fair. What, that’s not the sure sign you were thinking of? At least then you’re spared the anxiety over whether you should save that cookie to gaze upon rapturously with thoughts of love, or just eat it. Sadly, many of the goodies sold at the local fairs just aren’t that tasty. Made for sturdiness rather than flavor, they might outlast your romance anyway. Here’s a cookie recipe that will satisfy lovers of spicy sweetness; you can always write Miľujem ťa or Szeretlek on it to satisfy any other lovers.
This recipe is adapted from an old village cookbook. You can buy a mixed spice here called “Mézeskalács” or “Perník” spice, which includes cinnamon, allspice, anise, coriander, and nutmeg. If you can’t find a similar blend, substitute 1½ tsp ginger, 1½ tsp cinnamon, ½ tsp cloves, and ½ tsp nutmeg for a traditional gingerbread flavor.
Makes about 18 cookies
- 2½ cups/250 grams flour
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 2½ tsp mézeskalács or perník spice blend (or see above)
- 1 tsp cocoa powder
- 3/4 cup/125 grams granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 Tbshoney
For the icing:
- 7 oz/200 grams powdered sugar
- 2 egg whites
- 1 tsp vanilla extract or lemon juice
- food coloring, if desired
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, 190 C.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, spices and cocoa powder.
- Add eggs and honey. Mix to form a soft dough – it might not look like it’s going to come together, but it will. (I bet this dough would be easy to make in a food processor, not that I have one.)
- On a floured surface, roll out dough to about an eighth of an inch (4 mm) thick. Cut out with cookie cutters, and bake on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper for 10-12 minutes.
- While cookies are baking, beat together the icing ingredients until smooth.
- Allow cookies to cool completely before icing. Decorate using a pastry bag fitted with a small tip, or even a ziplock bag with a corner cut off.