Ok, so here is the method with some step by step pictures provided by Emily herself ❤️
1. In a large bowl, sift together flour & spices and add a pinch of salt. Set aside[gallery columns="2" size="medium" ids="296,297"]
2. In a separate bowl, cream butter with caster & brown sugar until pale.[gallery columns="2" size="medium" ids="300,298"]
3. Beat in egg.
4. Add flour mixture gradually and bring together into a dough (feel free to use your hands!)
5. Divide the mixture in half. Wrap each half in cling film and refrigerate for about 30
mins. Meanwhile, cut out paper templates (see separate template sheet). N.B. The
heart and star shapes are optional; if you have any festive cookie cutters you
could use those instead.
6. Take one half of dough, remove cling film and roll out between two sheets of
baking parchment until 4mm thick (a bit thicker than a £1 coin).
7. Remove top layer of parchment, cut out the 2 ‘lid/base’ pieces and as many ‘side’
pieces as will fit, leaving a clearance of 1cm between each piece. Keep them in
position on the bottom parchment sheet and slide the whole sheet onto a baking
tray. Set aside any trimmings/remaining dough.[gallery columns="4" size="medium" ids="303,305,306,307"]
8. Repeat with the other half of dough and cut all the remaining pieces. You should
have: 2 lid/bases, 4 sides, 4 corners, and 1 label.
9. Slide the second sheet onto a baking tray and put both trays into the freezer for
15 mins (this helps keep the nice straight edges and stops them spreading while
10. Preheat oven to 170 °C ( 160 °C fan). R e-roll all remaining dough and cut out any
shapes you like, either using cookie cutters or the heart & star templates. (Place
these in the freezer once the box shapes have gone into the oven.)
11. Remove both trays of box shapes from the freezer and bake for around 15 mins
until golden brown.
12. Leave trays to cool for 5 - 10 minutes, then gently transfer parchment sheets onto
wire racks to finish cooling.
13. Bake remaining shapes as above. N.B. smaller shapes might only need around 10 mins in the oven.
1. To make the icing, sift ¾ of the royal icing sugar mix into a bowl and gradually add
boiled water (very small amounts at a time) until thick and glossy and around the
same thickness as toothpaste. If it becomes too runny add a little more of the
icing sugar until you achieve the right consistency.
2. Fill the piping bag and snip off the end. Pipe a generous snake of icing along one
long edge of a ‘side’ piece. Attach it to the large ‘base’ square, a little way in from
the edge. Use a jar or glass to prop it up. Take the next side piece, ice one short
edge & one long edge and attach at right angles to the first piece. (They should
now stay up on their own). Continue with the final two side pieces until the box is
assembled.[gallery columns="2" size="medium" ids="309,310,311,312,313"]
3. To make the lid, turn the remaining large square over, pipe a blob of icing onto
each of the mini square ‘corner’ biscuits and attach them to the lid’s underside
near the corners, about 2 cm in from the edge (they are to stop the lid from sliding
off the box). Leave to set for a few mins then turn back over and place lid on top
of the box.[gallery columns="2" size="medium" ids="315,314"]
4. Once your box is assembled, use the remaining icing to attach sweets &
decorations and to decorate the biscuits to go inside. For a personalised gift, pipe
the initials of the lucky recipient onto the ‘label’ biscuit and attach it to the top of
@gingerbreadmaid (Twitter & Instagram)