Gingerbread hearts

The dough is extremely well behaved and will handle no end of rolling and re-rolling.  They are delicately flavoured with ginger, orange and a touch of cloves and can be rolled out super thin without shattering.

Adapted from a Delia Smith recipe in Delia's Cakes


  • 75g (3oz) light brown soft sugar
  • 2 tablespoons golden syrup
  • 1 tablespoon black treacle
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • pinch of ground cloves
  • finely grated zest of half an orange
  • 95g (3 1/2 oz) block butter (cut into lumps)
  • ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 225g (8oz) plain flour
  • icing sugar (to make icing)
  • Smarties to decorate
  • 2 greased baking sheets
  • cutters to make your shape of choice


  1. Put the sugar, syrup, treacle, water, spices and zest together in a large saucepan. Then bring them to boiling point, stirring all the time.
  2. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the butter and the bicarbonate of soda.
  3. Next stir in the the flour gradually until you have a smooth, manageable dough.
  4. Now leave the dough covered in a cool place to become firm (about 30 minutes).
  5. Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C Fan/350ºF (gas mark 4).
  6. Now roll out the dough to 3mm thick on a lightly floured surface and cut out your shapes of choice. Arrange them on a lightly greased baking sheet (leaving a little space for expansion) and bake for 10-15 minutes until the biscuits feel a little firm but are not browned.
  7. Leave them to completely cool on the baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring them to a wire cooling rack.
  8. To decorate, use the icing sugar to make stiff icing and pipe it onto the gingerbread to secure the Smarties.

Keywords: celebration, gifts, cute