Nothing brings greater joy than celebrating Christmas, baking and writing. And so this Christmas, I combine the holy trinity for happiness into an edible poem borne of a pastiche of my childhood Christmas memories – Twas the Night before Christmas, The Nutcracker and Gingerbread. Enjoy!
Gingerbread Men of Joy – An Edible Poem
Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house
all the creatures were hungry, even the mouse
I was cooking, baking, chopping and washing
the kitchen a disaster, calles for a galosh!
My family was nestled all snug in their beds
while visions of Gingerbread baked in their heads
And mama in her kerchief demanding batter
she desired a man and I, a letter
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter
I sprang from my stool to see what was the matter
Away to the window I flew like a flash
tore open the shutters and threw up the sash
The moon on breast of the dark pebbled porch
gave a lustre of midday to gnomies below
When, what to my wondering eyes did appear
but gingerbread Gigogne, mother ginger
With a look in her eye, so lively and quick
she said, “You want gingerbread? Well, here, take your pick.”
More rapid than eagles, her ingredients came
as she whistled and shouted and called them by name
Now, Flour! Now, Sugar! Now, Molasses and Yogurt!
On, Cinnamon! On, Allspice! On, Nutmeg and Cloves!
To the mixing bowls the wet and the dry
mix away, whisk away, christmas is nigh!
As flour before a baking storm fly
coat every surface like a white silk tie
So towards the mixing bowls the ingredients flew
sugar, oil and all spice too
And then in a twinkling, I smelled it quite plain
the wafting fragrance of ginger and cane
As I drew my head and was turning around
into the kitchen, she came with a bound
She was dressed like a fairy, from her head to her toes
with a crucifix adorning her clothes
Ten knobs of ginger, she had on her back
and the baking began when she opened her pack
Her ginger were so potent! Her cinnamon, how sweet
the adjunct included carrots and buckwheat
The flour was sprouted in the sun
then baked in the oven with the others till done
Excitement had me gnashing my teeth
as the sweet smell encircled my head like a wreath
Gingerbread was baked, in man and in word
The sugar caramelized, a sensual veneer
And then it beeped, the oven dimed
and just being done when midnight had chimed
A wink in her eye and a twist of her head
soon gave me to know, I’d be shortly in bed
She spoke not a word but kept on her work
and cooled all the gingerbread, then turned with a jerk
And laying a finger alongside her nose
she bleached (quite a burp!) before she arose
Clean-up was easy
with only a whistle
And away the mess flew
like down on the thistle
And I heard her exclaim
this’s the nights game
Merry Christmas to all
and a giggly New Year!
Gingerbread Muffins (Paleo, Vegan)
Moist gingerbread muffins that easily come together with 7 ingredients. No gluten and oil, paleo and vegan friendly.
- 192 g (2 cups) Bob's Red Mill Paleo Baking Flour
- 40 g (6 tbsp) coconut sugar
- 2 1/2 tsp gingerbread spice
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/8 tsp Himalayan salt
- 160 g (2/3 cup) COYO coconut yogurt (vanilla) (sub 1/2 cup applesauce if not available)
- 60 g (3 tbsp) molasses (sub date syrup if you wish to avoid cane sugar)
- 2 flax eggs (2 tbsp flax meal + 5 tbsp water)
- 240 g (1 cup) COYO coconut yogurt (vanilla)
Preheat the oven to 175°C (350°F).
First prepare the flax eggs. In a bowl, whisk together the flax meal and water. Set aside for 10 minutes to gel.
Meanwhile, sift the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, spice, baking soda) into a mixing bowl.
Add the remaining wet ingredients (coconut yogurt, molasses) to the flax eggs. Mix well.
Fold in the wet mixture into the dry ingredients. The batter should be on the thick side and cling on to the back of a spoon.
Divide the mixture into 8 silicon muffin molds. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the centre of a toothpick comes out clean.
Remove muffins from oven. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before removing from the molds, then allow to cool completely to room temperature.
Store the muffins in an airtight container at room temperature between paper towels to absorb moisture for 3-4 days; or freeze them for up to 1 month.
These muffins are best enjoyed with a cup of chai or hot chocolate!