Matcha Gingerbread Men

What’s an Asian christmas without something matcha inspired?
Made these for my aunt’s shop Yam by Beauty Kitchen for their christmas special! She sells Japanese cosmetics and recently ventured into japanese inspired gourmet products like honey and gold flake hokkaido milk ice cream.

I actually tried 2 recipes for this – one had a higher sugar cookie feel, the other was powdery and more like shortbread. I personally find that the shortbread was easier to work with as it held its shape quite nicely. I’ll link the two recipes below- see which one you prefer!

Matcha Gingerbread Men
Makes 16-20 gingerbread men cookies

Matcha Gingerbread Men (Recipe A) adapted from Salu Salo

⅔ cup butter, softened
¾ cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1¾ cups all-purpose flour
2 tbsp matcha green tea powder
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt

Matcha Gingerbread Men (Recipe B) adapted from Salu Salo

14 tbsp unsalted butter
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
250 g (2 cups) all purpose gluten free flour
2 tbsp matcha
1/4 tsp salt
4 oz. white chocolate

To make Matcha Gingerbread men Recipe A

In a large bowl, beat butter with sugar until light and fluffy; beat in egg and vanilla. Whisk together flour, matcha green tea powder, baking powder and salt; gradually stir into butter mixture until dough comes together.

Divide dough in half and wrap each in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Let stand at room temperature until soft enough to roll out, about 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350 °F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside. Place dough on a lightly floured surface and roll to ¼ inch thick. Use cookie cutter to make cookie shapes, re-rolling any scraps. Repeat process with the other dough.

Place cookies on prepared baking sheet and bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until edges are light brown. Let cookies cool for a minute on baking sheets on racks then transfer to racks and let cool completely.

To make Matcha Gingerbread men Recipe B

Preheat an oven to 325°F (165°C). Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat together the butter and confectioners’ sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the vanilla and beat until incorporated, about 1 minute.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, matcha and salt until well blended. Sift the flour mixture over the butter mixture and beat on low speed until the flour is completely incorporated and the dough has come together nicely, about 2 minutes.

Transfer the dough to a work surface. Gently knead the dough and shape it into a flattened disk. Place the dough between 2 sheets of parchment paper and roll out into a rectangle that is uniformly 1/4 to 3/8 inch (6 mm to 1 cm) thick.

Cut out gingerbread men (or any other shape). Place on the prepared baking sheet, spacing the cookies about 2 inches (5 cm) apart. Gather up the dough scraps, gently knead them into a ball, shape into a flattened disk and reroll, then cut out more cookies.

Bake until the cookies are set, about 15 minutes. Transfer the baking sheet to a wire rack and let the cookies cool completely on the sheet.

To Assemble

In a double boiler over low heat, melt the white chocolate, stirring continuously until just melted.

Remove the white chocolate from the double boiler and stir until completely smooth, then scoop the chocolate into a piping bag fitted with a #2 decorating tip. If you are decorating little men, start by outlining the edges of each cookie, then decorate the cookies as desired. Makes about 16 cookies.

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