I have two recipes for gingerbread men. The first yields a fairly soft cookie; the second is quite hard and is better suited for things such as gingerbread houses (which makes sense, since I got it off instructions accompanying a gingerbread house cookie cutter set). They both taste equally fine, it just depends on your personal preference, or food allergies/preferences, since only the second is vegan.
First recipe (softer dough):
• 3 cups flour
• 1 t baking soda
• 2 t ginger
• 125g butter
• 1/2 cup sugar
• 4 T golden syrup
• 1 egg – lightly whisked
• Currants and icing for decoration
• Put dry ingredients into bowl.
• Rub in butter.
• Add sugar and mix well.
• Warm the syrup slightly and add with the egg to the other ingredients.
• Knead until smooth.
• Roll out and cut.
• Bake at 190°C/375°F for 10-15 minutes.
Second recipe (harder/vegan dough):
• 1 cup vegetable shortening
• 1 cup sugar
• 1 cup unsulphured molasses
• 2 cups flour
• 3 teaspoons powdered ginger
• 1 teaspoon baking soda
• 1 teaspoon nutmeg
• 1 teaspoon salt
• Preheat oven to 190°C/375°F.
• Melt shortening in saucepan. Add sugar and molasses and mix well, making sure the sugar is fully dissolved.
• Sift the flour, baking soda, nutmeg, salt and ginger together in a mixing bowl. Gradually stir half the dry ingredients into the melted shortening mixture. Mix thoroughly.
• Knead the remaining dry ingredients in by hand.
• Roll the dough ¼-inch thick, and cut out the shapes.
• Bake on a greased cookie sheet for 10-15 minutes or until lightly brown. Leave to cool on sheets.