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What can I say?? I just love to bake!! Ever since I would go to Grandma's house as a little girl and bake highlight cakes or help Ninny make her famous vanilla cookies, I've been obsessed with baking! Not only from recipe books, but freestyle too! With a father as a chef, i suppose it is in my genes! Some of my favourite memories from growing up were those moments after dinner when my dad would get his sweet tooth pang and have me help him whip up a batch of toffee fruit kebabs, or irish caramels! I used to love how he never followed recipes, he always just knew what ingredients worked with one another and how to play with quantities. So, from an early age, i had learnt from the master and i was well on my way to bake on my own! When i was 7 years old, i used to bake chocoloate cakes to sell to the mothers of my friends when they came to watch our Saturday morning minkey hockey games! Before i knew it, i was being commissioned from my school teachers to bake cakes for them at $2 a pop! This blog holds just a few of my favourite tried and tested recipes which I've thoroughly enjoyed both baking and eating! So enjoy!!

Sunday, 12 December 2010

Christmas Gingerbread Owlee's!

With Christmas fast approaching, I thought I'd better start to get my festive cooking hat on and post some Christmassy treats for you to bake as gifts or for the Christmas table!  Here's post #1 of my Christmas collection... Gingerbread Owlee's!  They're SO easy to make and SO, SO much fun to decorate!!

Preparation Time: 15 mins
Cooking Time: 10 mins
Serves: about 25 cookies

 - 350g plain flour
 - 1tsp ground ginger
 - 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
 - 1/2 tsp ground cloves
 - 1tsp bicarb soda
 - 100g butter
 - 175g brown sugar
 - 1 egg
 - 4tbs Golden Syrup

1)  Mix together the flour, spices and bicarb soda.

2)  Rub in the butter with your fingers until it looks like breadcrumbs.

3)  Add the sugar.

4)  In a seperate bowl mix together the egg and golden syrup then add to the dry ingredients.

5)  Mix together until it forms a dough.  Tip the mixture out onto a clean surface and knead for a minute or two until it is smooth.

6)  Pre-heat oven to 180'C.

7)  Roll the dough to the depth of a pencil (about 5mm), then using a round cutter of your choosing, cut neat circles and place on baking tray.  Be sure not to place them too close as they spread slightly in the oven.

8)  Using some of the off cuts of dough, roll little balls in your palms and place two together like eyes (see picture below)

9)  Place a chocolate chip in the centre of each 'eye' ball and press gently.

10)  Cut almonds in half, lengthways and place below the eyes in the centre, to replicate a beak.

11)  Using the tip of a fork, gently press into the bottom of the cookie to create the best feathery look i could come up with!!  (Any other ideas are welcome!!)

11)  Bake in preheated oven for 10 mins or until golden.

12)  Let the owls cool slightly in their trays before transferring to a wire rack.


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