Edible tree baubles with built-in festive fragrance, as well as heaps of homemade charm
180g dark brown sugar
4 tbsp golden syrup
100g unsalted butter
350g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
11⁄2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 egg, beaten
For the icing
White icing pen or ready-to-use decorating icing (transferred to an icing syringe) – both available from Lakeland or Hobbycraft
1 Melt the sugar, syrup and butter together in a pan. Simmer for 2 minutes, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Set aside to cool for 10 minutes.
2 Tip the flour, bicarbonate of soda, ginger, cinnamon and beaten egg into a large bowl. Add the syrup mixture and stir to combine. Gently knead in the bowl to form a soft, streak-free dough. Wrap in cling film and chill for 30 mins.
3 Remove from the fridge and set aside to soften for about 5 mins. Preheat the oven to 200C/Fan 180C/400F and line two baking trays with baking parchment.
4 Dust a work surface with flour, roll out the dough to around 1⁄2 cm thick, cut out your shapes and place on the lined baking trays. Keep re-working the dough until you have used it all. If you’re hanging the biscuits, make holes for the string – a skewer or chopstick works well.
6 Bake for 8–10 minutes, until a darker brown. While still hot and on the baking sheet, sharpen up the holes with your chosen instrument, before transferring to racks to cool.
7 Once completely cool, decorate the biscuits with white icing, then loop through some string for hanging.
More scents of Christmas on page 24 of December’s The Simple Things, including Orange pot pourri, Filo mince pies, Pine drawer sachets, Chestnut and mushroom pate and Herb smudge wands.