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Burnaby school superintendent's family gingerbread recipe stands the test of Christmastime

'We have been making gingerbread cookies together (my mom, my sisters and I) for over 45 years now,' says superintendent Gina Niccoli-Moen.

In honour of the season of eating, drinking and being merry, we reached out to some community leaders and asked them to share their favourite holiday recipes. Below, Gingerbread cookies from Burnaby school district superintendent Gina Niccoli-Moen.

 “While my mom has been sharing traditional recipes with us for years, this one is one of my favourites,” said Niccoli-Moen. “We have been making gingerbread cookies together (my mom, my sisters and I) for over 45 years now.  

“She got the recipe from the mom of one of our classmates when we moved to Burnaby and we’ve been making them every Christmas since.  

“My sisters and I (and our families) go to my parents’ place every Christmas morning and open stockings (yup, still at my age) and, yes, enjoy gingerbread cookies for breakfast! I absolutely love and cherish that holiday family tradition and look forward to it every year." 

Gingerbread men: 

(From Edith Adams cookie book)

Bring to a boil and cool: 

1 cup shortening 

1 cup white sugar 

1 cup table molasses 

3 tsps vinegar      

Add next:  

2 beaten eggs 

Then add, mix well and chill: 

6 cups sifted all-purpose flour 

1 tsp soda 

1 tsp cinnamon 

1 tsp ginger 

1/2 tsp salt 

Roll on lightly floured board: 

1/18-inch thickness for thin cookies. 

1/4-inch thickness for plump ones. 

Place on greased cookie sheets: 

Bake at 190C (375F) for 8 to 12 minutes. 

Cool for five minutes.  

Remove from sheet and cool. 

Makes about 5 dozen cookies or 24 snowmen.

Snow icing for gingerbread men 

Freezes well  

3 egg whites 

1 pound icing sugar 

1 Tbsp vinegar – white 

Beat eggs white with fork. 

Add sugar and beat 1 minute on low speed. 

Add vinegar and beat 2 minutes on high. 

(Like meringue, dries hard, may colour).