Gingerbread Skeletons

Kids will love helping to make and decorate these fun spooky Halloween treats!

Makes 20
Ready in 1 hour, plus cooling

115g butter
115g light muscovado sugar
100g golden syrup
450g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
3 tsp ground ginger
1 egg, beaten

To decorate:

400g black ready-to-roll icing
Icing sugar, for dusting
75g ready-made royal icing
2 x 19g tubes white writing icing
1 pink and 1 black edible writing pen

1   Preheat the oven to 170C/150C fan/gas mark 3. Line 2 large baking sheets with baking paper. Place the butter, sugar and syrup in a saucepan and heat gently until the sugar has dissolved and the butter has melted.

2   Sift the flour, bicarbonate of soda, ginger and a pinch of salt into a large mixing bowl. Add the melted mixture and the egg and mix together to make a dough (see Quick Tip).

3   Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to the thickness of a one-pound coin. Stamp out gingerbread people shapes with a cutter. Re-knead and re-roll the dough trimmings and cut out more shapes. Place on the baking sheets and bake for 15-20 minutes until golden. Leave on the sheets for 5 minutes then transfer to a cooling rack and leave to cool completely.

4   To decorate, roll the black icing out thinly on a surface lightly dusted with icing sugar. Use the cutter to stamp out shapes and attach to gingerbread biscuits with a little of the royal icing. Spread a circle of royal icing on each biscuit to create a white face. Use the tubes of white writing icing to pipe bones on the biscuits. Leave until the icing has set then use the pink and black edible pens to draw skeleton features on the white faces.

Quick Tip

The dough may be a little sticky at first but should become firmer as it cools. Add an extra sprinkling of flour, if needed.