This year, Leeds Trinity University Exercise, Health and Nutrition student Grace Moore launched her vegan cookery book, Simplistically Raw. With Christmas only a few days away Grace has written a blog post sharing her favourite Christmas recipe.
So... the time of year has graced us again. That's right, the decks are up, the Christmas jumper is out, and the countdown to Christmas has begun.
I have always loved Christmas. It's a time of year which brings back heaps of happy memories from when I was a child: the excitement of leaving out a glass of warm milk and a mince pie for Santa, not forgetting a carrot for the reindeers. Such precious times spent sharing gifts, and celebrating love, joy and peace. It's the giving of love in abundance which holds this time of year so very close to my heart.
Each year my excitement never ceases to falter, despite nearly hitting my twenties. Of course, along with the festivities comes the joy of baking batches of Christmas goodies to share! From savoury to sweet, nibbles, pickles and even a little tipple, there's no limitation for the festivities of a plant-based Christmas.
The aroma of Christmas spices and warming fragrances filling the house with an overwhelming sense of cosiness and Christmas spirit is wonderful, especially the smell of a freshly baked batch of gingerbread.
Vegan Spiced Gingerbread Men Cookies is my first recommendation of my 12 Days of Christmas plant-based festive treats to enjoy over the holiday.
Grace's e-book Simplistically Raw is also available here.
Day 1: Vegan Spiced Gingerbread Men Cookies
To make the gingerbread:
- 2 1/2 cups + 2 tbsp whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup refined coconut oil, softened to room temperature
- 1/2 cup of coconut sugar (can be substituted for soft brown sugar)
- 1/2 cup of maple syrup
- 3 tbsp aquafaba
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 3 tsp ground cinnamon
- 3 tsp ground ginger
- 3/4 tsp ground allspice
- 3/4 tsp baking soda
- Optional add-ins: raisins, desiccated coconut, chopped almonds.
To make the icing:
- 3/4 cup confectioner's sugar, sifted
- 2-3 tbsp water
- To make green icing add 1 tsp matcha powder (optional)
- To make red icing add 1-2 tsp beetroot juice (optional).
1. Preheat the oven to 180C and line a baking tray with greaseproof paper.
2. To a mixing bowl add the flour, coconut sugar, spices and baking soda and mix well.
3. Once combined, add the coconut oil, maple syrup, aquafaba and apple cider vinegar. If you desire to add any additional ingredients such as raisins, desiccated coconut or chopped nuts, add these now.
4. Preferably using your hands, or the back of a cold metal spoon, gently knead the mixture into a small ball of dough.
5. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to roughly 1 cm in thickness and use gingerbread man cookie cutters to cut out the gingerbread biscuits. Place these on the lined baking tray and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until slightly brown and firm to touch.
6. Once baked, place the biscuits on a cooling rack and allow to cool before icing.
7. To make the icing, gently stir 1 tablespoon of water at a time into the sifted confectioner's sugar until it reaches a smooth, icing consistency. If you wish to colour the icing, add the matcha powder or beetroot juice now and mix well. Transfer the icing mixture to an icing bag and ice the gingerbread as desired.
Hope you enjoy this yummy festive treat!