Gingerbread men are probably my favorite Christmas cookie ever since I was a child and they would be sticking out of the top of our stockings Christmas morning. Then when I became an adult, I found Black Strap Molasses and fell in love with the intense new flavor of gingerbread men I could make. Couple that with making gingerbread men clothes out of starbursts and airheads…Oh! They are just so much fun to make and eat!
Clothed Gingerbread Men Cookies
- 1/3 cup Shortening
- 1 cup dark brown sugar
- 1 1/2 cup black strap molasses
- 2/3 cup cold water
- 6 cups flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp allspice
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1 tsp cloves
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- Royal Icing (because it hardens completely)
- Airheads, softened in the microwave
- Starbursts, softened in the microwave
- Mary Janes, softened in the microwave
- Red hots
- Pearl sprinkles
- Twizzler ropes
- Other gummy candies & edible decorations
- Cream shortening, sugar, molasses.
- Stir in water.
- Blend in the dry ingredients.
- Chill dough for at least 1 hour.
- Dough will be sticky so make sure you have a good coating of flour on the counter. Flip dough over periodically while rolling out.
- Make sure cookies are at least 1/2″ thick so they hold up to transferring them after they are baked.
- Preheat oven to 350F. Bake on greased cookie sheet for 15 minutes. Let cool before decorating.
- Soften only the candy you are immediately using for a few seconds at a time until pliable. Roll out on clean surface with rolling pin. Use a very sharp knife or the shape of the cookie cutter to make shapes.
- Mary Janes are difficult to work with since there is a peanut butter center. Once they are soft you can pull them into shapes but be careful not let the center/filling show. You can also try to wipe the filling center off the softened candy with a damp paper towel.
- Use royal icing because it hardens completely. Use the icing as glue to make sure the candy “clothes” stick to the man.
- Use icing and sprinkles to decorate and make patterns on top of the candy clothing.
- Airheads soften really easily even with just the warmth of your hands so microwaving them made them too soft sometimes.
- You can also roll out gum drop type of candies, however they don’t re-harden like starbursts and airheads so the are sticky and make a mess especially if you’re going to stack these.
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