I love the way this super cute Gingerbread Man stamp turned out! Not only does this Cookie STAMPede stamp remind me of one of my favorite cookie recipe, but also a beloved folktale, The Gingerbread Man.
Our kids used to love being read to, and The Gingerbread Man was one of the many books that filled their shelves.
“Run, run, run as fast as you can … you can’t catch me I’m the Gingerbread man!”
I was just thinking of that story as I made the clay stamps and how the intent of the farmer’s wife was to bake a little gingerbread boy in hope of creating a companion for her husband. She was hoping for a relationship..much like Geppetto’s puppet Pinnochio. Instead, the feisty little cookie sprang to life as soon as the oven door opened and he ran toward what he thought was freedom.
“Run, run, run, as fast as you can…you can’t catch me I’m the Gingerbread man!”
Every time he outsmarted an obstacle it made him bolder. “I can run away from the farmer, I can run away from the cow, I can run away from…” and he became more and more boastful.
The whole time he could have gone back to the safety that was intended for him, but he kept running. (Wow..that reminds me of another parable.) He went until he came to a sly fox and needed to cross the body of water to get to the other side. The fox allowed the boastful cookie to brag about all he had done and talk about how he had “Run, run, run”. The fox pretended that he was just being helpful, but knew all along that his next meal was just minutes away. Ultimately, that is how the cookie crumbled.
It was a great lesson on the Biblical truth of Proverbs 16:18
“Pride goes before the fall (destruction).”
But, I think there is also a deeper truth. God’s original intent was for relationship with us. “For God SO loved the world..”. We were handcrafted, and designed with a will. We can make a choice. Run into the arms of our creator, or run into the world. Run..run..run..as fast as your can. Most of the story was about the small cookie running and outsmarting others. He never rested. He ran until he could no longer help himself. He was vulnerable, tired and so arrogant that he would never get caught that he accepted the help of someone who had their own agenda. Someone who was more than willing to capitalize on the opportunity, and it cost the Gingerbread Man everything.
I loved how the old folktales taught moral and character building. The writers used a simple value and built a story around it so that kids could identify with the truth.
How do we pass that along to the next generation?
What fable or folktale do your remember?
RECIPE FOR STAMPED GINGERBEAD COOKIES
preheat oven to 375 degrees
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup dark molasses
1 tsp. vanilla
2 1/4 cups flour
1 tsp soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp. ginger
2 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 tsp. cloves
1/2 tsp nutmeg
Cream together first 5 ingrediens until light and fluffy.
Add in dry ingredients and stir until a large ball forms.
Toll dough into small balls about the size of a walnut. * That is what my great grandmother would have said!
Place about 2 inches apart on greased cookie sheet.
Lightly oil bottom of stamp or a glass. Dip into a shallow pan of sugar and press dough until flattened. dip into sugar and repeat until all the cookies are done.
Bake for about 10 minutes. Cool slightly and remove from pan.
WARNING..these cookies smell so good that they will go fast so you might want to make a double batch and put some in the freezer!
From my kitchen to yours…enjoy!