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1992 1st Place: Gingerbread Bears



Yield: 42 Servings
3 1/2 C Unsifted all-purpose flour
1 1/2 t ginger,Ground
1 1/2 t Cinnamon
1 T Baking soda
1 T cloves,Ground
1/4 T Salt
1/2 C Butter,,Softened
3/4 C Sugar
1 Egg
3/4 C Light molasses
1 T lemon rind,Grated
Decorations as desired


Preparation time: 35 minutes Chilling time: 2 hours or overnight Cooking time: 7 to 10 minutes
1. Measure 3 1/2 cups flour; sift together with spices, baking soda and salt; set aside. Beat butter with an electric mixer in a large bowl until smooth. Add sugar and mix on high speed until light and fluffy, 2 minutes. Add egg and mix well. Stop the mixer and add molasses and lemon rind. Mix on low speed to combine. Stir in dry ingredients with a wooden spoon.
2. Divide dough into four parts. Wrap each one separately in plastic wrap and refrigerate 2 hours or overnight.
3. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease baking sheets.
4. Remove one piece of dough from the refrigerator at a time. Roll the well-chilled dough on a floured board or between sheets of waxed paper to a 1/8-inch thickness. Cut out with cookie cutters and carefully transfer to prepared baking sheets, leaving 1-inch between each cookie.
5. Bake just until the cookies are lightly browned and set, 7 to 10 minutes. Do not overbake. Transfer from baking sheets to a wire rack and cool completely before decorating. Decorate as desired. Store in airtight containers.













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