What is christmas without these little guys, right? Making them may seem daunting, but it's actually pretty simple, it's all in how you decorate them. Personally, I think less is more. I like mine with the least amount of icing possible. I forgot to get little cinnamon candies, so my husband suggested I just use the M&M's I had for cookies. What a great idea that was!
This recipe is pretty much the best I've ever had, they kept their shape perfectly, they were spicy and sweet, but not too sweet. They were soft but crisp - I like my men a little fatter so they stay softer.
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 cup dark molasses
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
5 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/4 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
M&M's or other candies
In a large bowl, with an electric mixer cream the butter, add the sugar, and beat the mixture until fluffy.
Beat in the egg, the molasses, and the vinegar.
Into another bowl, sift together the flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, and salt and stir the mixture into the butter mixture, a little at a time.
The dough will be soft.
Flatten the dough slightly and chill it for at least 3 hours or overnight.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Roll out the dough, 1 piece at a time, 1/4-inch thick on a floured/powdered sugar surface and cut out cookies with a 4-inch gingerbread man cutter.
Transfer the cookies with a spatula to buttered baking sheets, arranging them 2-inches apart, and bake them in the oven for 6 to 8 minutes or until no imprint remains when they are touched lightly with the fingertip.
Transfer the cookies with the spatula to racks and let them cool.
Let the cookies stand for 20 minutes, or until the icing is set.