Gingerbread Cookies with White Chocolate Icing

Gingerbread Cookies with White Chocolate Icing

  • Serves: 30
  • Prep Time: 00:30
  • Cooking Time: 00:15
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Gingerbread cookies are a traditional Christmas treat. This healthy paleo version of gingerbread has a slightly soft and chewy centre and are topped with homemade White Chocolate icing. The icing dresses the cookies up for Christmas but best of all it makes them taste so good!

Ingredients

* Please click on the green icon next to the ingredients listed below for extra details and helpful information.

  • 1/2 cup almond meal/flour
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup arrowroot flour
  • 8 Lge Medjool date(s), pitted
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda (bicarb)
  • 1/4 tsp pink Himalayan salt
  • 1/4 cup ghee
  • 2 Lge egg(s)
  • 2 Tbsp molasses (organic unsulphured)
  • WHITE CHOCOLATE ICING:
  • 100g cacao butter
  • 100g coconut butter
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup, 100%, or honey
  • 1 - 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract (organic)
  • Pinch of pink Himalayan salt

Directions

Preheat oven to 160c and line 2 baking trays with baking paper.

Add the almond meal/flour, coconut flour, arrowroot, dates, cinnamon, ginger, baking soda and salt to a food processor or similar. Process for approximately 10 seconds to produce a finer texture and for the dates to break down.

Add the ghee, eggs and molasses, process until the mixture is soft and gathers at the sides of the bowl. Remove the blade, scrape down the sides and give a good mix by hand. The mixture will be soft and sticky but firms up a little as the coconut flour soaks up moisture.

Roll heaped teaspoonfuls of dough into approx. 30 small balls. Place on the prepared trays leaving 5cm between them. To make a nice round cookie shape, place a small square of baking paper over a ball of dough and use the flat bottom of a glass to gently press down through the paper. Repeat for each ball.

Bake for 15 - 18 minutes. The bottoms of the cookies will brown but the tops won't change much in colour. Allow the cookies to completely cool on the trays before handling.

Coat the cooled cookies with the white chocolate icing, leaving a little of the gingerbread showing at the edges. (I find a teaspoon works great for this job. Drop the chocolate in the centre of the cookie, then turn the spoon over and use the back to smooth around forming a circle). Place your tray of iced gingerbread into the fridge for a few minutes to set.

Store gingerbread cookies in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.

To make the White Chocolate Icing: Add the cacao butter and coconut butter to a small saucepan over a medium - low heat. Stir continually until both melt (don't allow the mixture to get too hot, the stirring will help with the melting). Remove from the heat. Pour the mixture into a variable speed blender, add the maple syrup, vanilla and salt. Place on lid and slowly turn to a low speed of 3 and blend for 10 - 12 seconds to emulsify.

Pour the white chocolate mixture into a glass jug and allow to start cooling. Stir from time to time to help it cool. You can place the chocolate into the fridge to shorten the cooling time but you must watch it carefully (continue to mix as the sides will set before the middle and this could make it become lumpy). You want the chocolate to be thick but spreadable. Don't stress if you come back later and find your white chocolate has set firm, it can be melted again.

almond meal/flour

The most favoured gluten/grain free flour substitute in my kitchen is almond meal. It is finely ground blanched almonds and in some countries, it is called almond flour. It has a slightly sweet flavour so you don’t have to add as much sweetener when baking with it. All kinds of nuts can be ground down to make a meal and are excellent for raw cheesecake or pie bases. Nut and seeds meals/flours are all best stored in airtight containers in the fridge or freezer to prevent them going rancid.

coconut flour

This flour is made by drying and grinding the meat of a coconut to a fine texture. Coconut flour is an excellent source of dietary fiber and protein. It's a good grain-free alternative but does require a larger amount of liquid than normal when baking. When replacing in a recipe that calls for wheat flour, use this guide; 1 cup of wheat flour = 1/3 cup coconut flour, add an extra egg and an extra 1/3 cup of liquid. There are now quite a few brands of coconut flour available and they all seem to perform differently depending on how coarse the texture is. In my recipes I have used Organic Coconut Flour from 'Let's Do Organic', I like its finer texture (I purchase from iherb.com).

arrowroot flour

Arrowroot is a herb, the roots are cultivated for its starch properties. It is used in my recipes as a thickener and I also like combining it with almond meal to produce a much lighter texture, more like a gluten flour. I find the starch helps to bind the ingredients together. You can substitute tapioca flour, which is made from the dried roots of the cassava plant. Tapioca can be used in baking, it has a slightly sweet flavour. However, I do not recommend thickening with tapioca, as it has a stretchy, gummy texture. Supermarkets only sell in very small containers, which is not cost effective. Purchase from baking specialty stores, health food stores or online. ( When substituting for cornflour in recipes, 2 teaspoons arrowroot = 1 tablespoon cornflour/starch).

Medjool date(s)

I use Medjool dates in my recipes, I like the flavour and softness of these dates. A bonus, there are no preservatives used with these dates. They blend easy when adding to recipes and give a slight caramel flavour.

Medjool dates are an excellent source of dietary fiber, rich in potassium, copper, manganese, magnesium and vitamin B6.

cinnamon

I am sure you will notice as you read my recipes that cinnamon appears quite frequently. It lends itself to savoury and sweet dishes. I have used ground cinnamon in my recipes if not stated otherwise. The best cinnamon to use is Ceylon (Verum). It has huge health benefits in regulating blood sugar levels. Cinnamon has antifungal properties and candida (yeast overgrowth) cannot live in a cinnamon environment. Added to food it inhibits bacterial growth, making it a natural food preservative and these are just a few of the benefits.

ginger

Ginger root is widely used as a spice but also for medicinal purposes. It is a hot spice which you will find in many commercial curry powders. It's often used to prevent motion sickness and nausea. Some studies have shown joint swelling in people suffering with arthritis experience less pain and swelling when taken daily. I like to use fresh minced ginger in my meals and dry ground ginger in baked goods.

baking soda (bicarb)

Also known as Bicarbonate of Soda or Sodium Bicarbonate and is used as a rising agent in baking, it contains no gluten or grains. I use Bob's Red Mill baking soda as I find it rises better than other brands I've tried.

pink Himalayan salt

Raw pink Himalayan salt crystals is unlike common table salt which can be a highly refined industrial byproduct, otherwise know as sodium chloride. Himalayan salt is completely pure and may naturally balance the body's alkaline/acidity and regulate water content. In addition Himalayan salt helps in the absorption of nutrients from food and contains many trace minerals for healthy cell structure. I purchase fine pink Himalayan crystal salt so I can use it in my shaker and for cooking.

ghee

Ghee is clarified butter, it is pure butter fat that has had the milk solids removed. You can get the flavour of butter in your cooking without the dairy (please don't consume if you have an allergy to ghee). My favourite brand is Organic Valley Purity Farms which I purchase online from iherb. It is also very easy to make yourself.

egg(s)

I have used large free range or organic eggs from a 70g carton in my recipes. Eggs are one of the few foods considered to be a complete protein because they contain all 9 essential amino acids, also studies have shown that lutein (yellow colour) in egg yolks protects against the progress of early heart disease.

molasses (organic unsulphured)

Blackstrap organic molasses is a nourishing sweetener which contains a considerable amount of nutrients that are essential for the body. Molasses contains essential minerals such as calcium, magnesium, manganese, potassium, copper, iron, phosphorous, chromium and cobalt. It also has various vitamins such as niacin, vitamin B6, thiamine and riboflavin. Choose an organic unsulphured brand when purchasing.

cacao butter

Raw organic cacao butter is also know as chocolate butter. It is used to make chocolate, truffles and desserts. Raw cacao butter is made by cold pressing ground cacao to prevent the lost of vital nutrients and separates the thick and creamy butter from the fibrous powder. It sets firm and gives a rich chocolate flavour. Choose certified organic, cold pressed and non-gmo, my favourite brands are Lovingearth or Navitas Naturals. Cacao butter is high in antioxidants, healthy fats and is a good mood support.

coconut butter

Coconut butter is a healthy and nutritious spread made with 100% coconut. Add to smoothies or just eat out of the jar when a sweet treat is needed. It is so easy to make yourself, saving you lots of money, see recipe on page 304 of The JOYful Table cookbook. It can be warmed and mixed into slices and bars to give a rich coconut flavour. An added benefit is that it does not melt as easy as coconut oil and stays firmer in the recipe.

maple syrup, 100%

Maple syrup is an earthy, sweet tasting amber liquid that is produced by boiling down the sap of maple trees. Use organic 100% maple syrup which is a natural food sweetener, not a flavoured maple syrup. Pure maple syrup contains a decent amount of some minerals, especially manganese and zinc, some traces of potassium and calcium but it does contain a whole bunch of sugar. I try to reduced the amount of sweetness in each recipe to the lowest possible without compromising taste. Feel free to adjust to your liking. I use maple syrup in place of raw honey when I don't want the strong honey flavour coming through in a recipe. I have paleo cookies and desserts in my cookbook made from whole food ingredients with natural sugars but please don’t overindulge. Use as a treat only for special occasions.

vanilla extract (organic)

Use an organic vanilla extract (not an essence) or vanilla powder. Vanilla makes a big difference to the flavour of a recipe, I recommend keeping to the quantities I have stated in a recipe. I prefer Madagascar pure vanilla extract manufactured by ‘Simply Organic’ and for powder, Vanillamax 100% pure, finely ground Madagascar vanilla beans produced by Bulletproof.

pink Himalayan salt

Raw pink Himalayan salt crystals is unlike common table salt which can be a highly refined industrial byproduct, otherwise know as sodium chloride. Himalayan salt is completely pure and may naturally balance the body's alkaline/acidity and regulate water content. In addition Himalayan salt helps in the absorption of nutrients from food and contains many trace minerals for healthy cell structure. I purchase fine pink Himalayan crystal salt so I can use it in my shaker and for cooking.

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