Naturally delicious real food.

Iced gingerbread

This recipe brings childhood memories flooding back of my Grandmother who was an amazing lady, she arrived from Australia over 80 years ago, on a boat with my father, then a toddler and heavily pregnant with my Aunt, it took them six weeks of real adventure on the high seas to get to England. In her later years she lived with us, we grow up always having her milling around in the kitchen and helping my mother, she was an amazing cook; keen on her supplements and really natural cooking, maybe the reason why she lived well into her nineties! There would always be pearl barley and lentils in her stews, lots of vegetables, the most delicious cakes, biscuits and the strongest tea ever!

These iced gingerbreads and Anzac biscuits were two of her specials  – Ottolenghi’s Anzacs are nearly as good and do have the added advantage that they are available by mail order for a special treat! Anzac day is 25th April (which is also Anz, my daughter’s birthday ) the biscuit was created to commemorate the great losses endured by the Australian and New Zealand armies during WW1.

Sadly, I never got her recipe for the iced gingerbread but this is the best that I have found and they are just as yummy- It is taken from the Modern Pantry by Anna Hansen . A fabulous restaurant in Clerkenwell, great Kiwi cooking!

Whilst I reminisce about about all good things from down-under don’t forget the Royal Academy has a wonderful celebration of Australian art starting this month.

Iced gingerbread

Serves 12

Makes about 12 slices

  • 150g plain flour
  • 25g cornflour
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp baking powder
  • A pinch of salt
  • 100g cold unsalted butter, diced

For the icing

  • 150g icing sugar
  • 115g unsalted butter, diced
  • 3 tbsp golden syrup
  • 4 tsp ground ginger

Preheat the oven to 160C/325F/gas mark 3.

2 Sift the flour, cornflour, sugar, ground ginger, baking powder and salt into a bowl, then add the diced butter. Mix together with a wooden spoon or, using an electric mixer, mix on medium speed with the paddle attachment until everything comes together.

3 Press the dough evenly into an 11 x 34cm baking tin lined with baking parchment. Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes.

4 About 5 minutes before the shortbread base is cooked, make the icing: combine all the ingredients in a small pan and heat gently, stirring constantly until the butter has melted.

5 Pour the hot icing over the shortbread base as soon as it comes out of the oven.

Cut into slices while still warm, then leave to cool.


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2 comments on “Iced gingerbread


02 Oct 2013

Hello Sally
Exactly what size baking tin…. 11cm (really?) x 34cm? I like to follow a new recipe slavishly the first time and can never work out tin sizes for myself. I think the picture shows quite a thin pastry layer so perhaps the 34cm is correct and 11cm is a typo???? Would like to know please!




    24 Oct 2013

    This is a long thin tin Approx 5 inches by 13 inches that is great for making pastry/tart slices – or double the recipe and use a 12 x 12 inch tin


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Through The Natural Pantry I hope to share with you some of the delicious recipes discovered whilst cooking in my kitchen with produce grown in our garden and the very best natural ingredients.