Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Gingerbread Men

I don't understand what its like to have a small family or not know how to act around small people. On my mum's side of the family, I'm one of thirteen cousins, and one of the 'old bunch' (to be fair, if you categorize us that way, the 'middle bunch' is only one cousin who's a couple of years younger than I am and a couple of years older than the start of the 'young bunch'; the system is inherently flawed). I digress - the main point is, I love having a gigantic family. And I'm learning to love babysitting as well :P My youngest cousins are six and three, and very energetic (which is my main qualm about babysitting, because I am lazy). I actually invented a game called Tickle Monster which they love, where the Tickle Monster (me) has to sit on the couch and CAN'T GET OFF THE COUCH (this is a very important rule), and everyone else (ie the boys, who have energy) has to run around and try not to get caught by the tickle monster. In my defence, I also play soccer and dodgeball and chasey and the like.

The other day, though, knowing it was going to be stinking hot (and wanting to mold them into the next Junior Masterchefs), I prepared for babysitting by bringing stuff to make gingerbread men. I was going to make chocolate spiders with them (easy and delicious), but I did that last time, and its CHRISTMAS. Not that I think we've ever made gingerbread men as an exclusively Christmas food, I think I've probably made them twice before and never at Christmas, but it seems to be the done thing. I also got to teach Mr Six about fractions (possibly above his age level, but he's ridiculously intelligent, and it makes sense when you can look at how many 1/2 cup or 1/3 cups go into 1 cup). And it kept them occupied, which is the main thing, its nice to come home and be able to say that you had a great day babysitting!

Side notes: I did get their mother's permission before I put these photos up, and they washed their hands first so Mr Six flattening the brown sugar with his hands isn't quite as concerning as it could be. And I don't know why Mr Three is wearing a diamond bracelet.


125g butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup golden syrup
1 egg
2 1/2 cups plain flour
1 tbsp ground ginger
1/2 tbsp bicarb soda

1. Line two trays with baking paper

2. Mix the butter, sugar, golden syrup and egg until combined.

3. Add the flour, ginger and bicarb soda and mix with a wooden spoon.

4. Lightly flour a chopping board (or clean bench space), turn out the gingerbread mix onto the board and knead until smooth.

5. Roll to desired thickness and cut out shapes to put on the baking tray. We used letters, numbers and animals.

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