It's the second day of the 10 Days of Craftsmas, which Maddy of Somewhere Splendid and I dreamed up to provide you with lots of holiday baking and crafting ideas. Today's project was actually a component of yesterday's gorgeous Rustic Rosette Runner table decor idea. These gingerbread reindeer cookies do double duty. Of course they're delicious and easy to make, but they also serve as seating cards for an intimate holiday party.
You might think seating cards are only for formal affairs, but they can actually help the evening go more smoothly for everyone. For example, one of your outgoing friends would be a good seat neighbor for one of your introverted friends, because Chatty Kathy will naturally keep the conversation going. Placing a comedic friend in between your argumentative cousin and a guest who loves to talk politics and religion can ease inevitable tension. For dinner party seating tips from the pros, check out this Real Simple guide.
Do you want to make these cute gingerbread reindeer seating cards? Here's the recipe I used. Enjoy!
Recipe: Yields 24 cookies. I used the remnant dough to make other winter-y shapes for guests' take-home favors. I'll share that project with you later this week.
1 cup packed brown sugar
⅓ cup shortening
1½ cups dark molasses
⅔ cup cold water
7 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon salt
sanding sugar, nonpareils, or other decorations (optional)
In large bowl, mix the brown sugar, shortening, molasses and water until well blended. Stir in remaining ingredients. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours.
Heat the oven to 350°F. On floured surface, roll dough ¼" thick. Cut the dough with a floured cookie cutter. Place the cutouts about 2" apart on a lightly greased cookie sheet. Bake the cookies for 10 to 12 minutes or until no indentation remains when touched. Immediately remove the cookies from the cookie sheet to a cooling rack. Allow the cookies to cool completely (about 30 minutes).
Decorate each cookie using softened frosting, a pastry bag (or modified sandwich bag), and #2 icing tip. At the center of your shape, slowly and carefully pipe the guest's name. Use a toothpick if necessary to help smooth or remove any mistakes that have been made. Finish the design with sanding sugar, nonpareils, or other sugar decorations as desired.
If you're joining the Craftsmas fun midstream, be sure to check out all of the projects in this holiday DIY series here.
images: Maddy Hague