I'm sure there's some psychological reason so many of us decide to bake during a crisis. Maybe it's the feeling of accomplishment in making something or just the homely comfort of following a recipe, the smells from the oven and having something amazing to indulge in but it seems to be a thing judging by the sudden difficulty in finding flour and other baking ingredients at the moment. Maybe it's just a panic situation where people think there won't be any food so they want to be able to make staples like bread at home. Either way, we're enjoying baking for fun and as part of the twins' home education - it's totally science and maths right!?
I got a few fun photos of the twins when I let them loose with the sieve and rollers so I'll share a few here and post our recipe below if you fancy making these. I used a recipe with olive oil as we had run out of butter and milk (luckily I found some UHT milk in the cupboard, I reckon you could easily substitute this for any kind of milk alternative to make it vegan).
It was a 3 stage baking expedition. We made the dough and it had to chill for an hour, it was too close to bedtime so it chilled overnight and we finished off rolling, cutting and baking after school/work on Tuesday.
We then didn't have decorating stuff in the cupboard (I thought we did) so I had to go to Tesco (and get other actually essential things to justify it so got back after bedtime), so we decorated them in the morning before school so they could take them to share with the teachers and any other kids that day as the twins are only in for two days/week.
And of course, there was the eating!
They did share most of them when they took them to school but kept two big hearts with their names on at home - some extra flourishes were added when we got home from school/work on Wednesday too.
Here's the recipe...
80ml sunflower oil
170g sugar soft light brown sugar
60ml black treacle
340g plain flour
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
1 ½ tsp mixed spice
2 ½ tsp ground ginger
In a food processor beat the sugar and oil for a few minutes. Add the treacle and milk and blitz to combine.
In bowl sift all the dry ingredients together and gradually add to the wet mixture in the food processor until you get a stiff dough and all the dry mix is used up. This can also be done by hand of course takes longer.
Put into a freezer bag or wrap in clingfilm and refrigerate for at least an hour. When ready to use remove from fridge and preheat oven to 175oC. Then roll out onto a floured surface and cut into desired shapes.
Place onto baking paper on a baking tray and bake for about 8 to 12 minutes depending on how soft/crunchy you like your gingerbread.
Leave to cool on a wire rack and make sure they are completely cool before you ice them.
Leftover dough can be stored in the fridge for at least a week or in the freezer for a long time.