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Honey Gingerbread Hearts


With less than one month till December 1st. it won’t be long until the scent of Christmas will permeate my apartment with Christmas cookies, Christmas food and Christmas candy. The past few years I have also begun baking the danish gingerbread made with plenty of honey. If you want to join in, you should start with the dough at least one month before.

HONEY GINGERBREAD HEARTS

STARTER DOUGH:
250 G HONEY
125 G FLOUR

Heat the honey in a pot to 35-40° celsius.

Mix honey and wheat flour well together in a bowl, and put it in a container with a lid. Place the container  in a kitchen cabinet for at least 3-4 weeks.

The dough can become very hard. But when the potash is added, a chemical reaction occurs and the dough becomes softer and easier to knead.

GINGERBREAD DOUGH:
1 EGG YOLK
4 G AMMONIUM BICARBONATE
2 TBSP. COLD WATER
375 G STARTER DOUGH
125 G FLOUR
5 G POTASH (POTASSIUM CARBONATE)
4 G GROUND CINNAMON
2 G GROUND GINGER
2 G GROUND CLOVES
2 G GROUND ALLSPICE
ZEST OF ONE ORANGE
OIL AND FLOUR FOR THE BAKING SHEET

Preheat the oven to 180 ° Celsius.

Mix the egg yolks together with the bicarbonate in a bowl until there are no lumps.

Stir the potash into a couple of spoonfuls of water, beware that the mixture can get quite hot.

Mix the egg yolks and potash in the starter dough.

Add cinnamon, ginger, clove, allspice, orange zest and flour and knead the dough well together. It is easiest in a stand mixer and will take about 6 minutes, otherwise you will have to work hard for 6-8 minutes.

If the dough is very dry when you knead it, you can add a few extra spoonfuls of water a bit at a time.

Roll out the dough on  a lightly floured table, to a thickness of approx. 4 mm, and cut it out as hearts.

Gather the remain dough and roll it out again until you have used up all the dough.

Place the hearts on a baking sheet, lined with baking paper brushed with a little oil and sprinkled with flour.

Bake them for 8-10 minutes.

The hearts are done when you lightly press the top and it spring up again. If you leave an indent, they should bake a little longer.

Transfer the honey hearts to a cooling rack and let them cool off completely.

They are hard as rocks when they are freshly baked, but put the hearts in a container with a damp cloth over them and leave them in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. They will be delicious and soft again.

DECORATION:
200 G DARK CHOCOLATE

Remove the honey hearts from the fridge and brush them with melted dark chocolate. Let the chocolate set before eating them.

If you want to decorate them with glossy images, just put the image on when the chocolate is still wet.

Only cover the honey hearts with chocolate that are to be eaten immediately. The rest can last for at least 1 month in the refrigerator without getting dry.

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