With Halloween and Christmas fast approaching I’ve been looking at different ways I can keep some old traditions AND be more eco-conscious at the same time. Gingerbread is one of my favourite sweet treats. I remember my mum treating us to chocolate dipped gingerbread (with raisin eyes of course) when my sister and I were younger.
Now I don’t own many different shapes of biscuit cutters so I had a look at where I could locally source some and had a look online. Then I thought, how hard can it be to make my own?
A piece of string
Empty can (the taller the better)
Sharp scissors (or Stanley knife)
Here’s how you do it:
Start by drawing out your design using some scrap paper (if you’re not feeling particularly creative just print off a picture to use as your outline instead). Once you’re happy with it, rinse out a can and cut the top and the bottom off – be careful as this can be sharp! Cut once vertically to get the longest strips out of the can to make a flat sheet. Measure 1.5 cm and mark with a pencil then cut along the line and you’ll have your first strip! Repeating this step, you should get 3 or 4 strips.
Next you’ll need a piece of string to help you measure out your design and show you how much of the strip you’ll need. You can skip this step if you like but having tried it, the strip was too long and it snapped because I was overworking it too much. Use your pencil to help you gently bend the metal into shape, using your drawing as a guide. When you’re done, tape the two ends together and voila! I used some sellotape I still have lying around to seal the cutter and it works, trust me. It took me about 45 minutes to make 3 cutters and I saved myself a 45 minute trip to the shop to get a shape I wasn’t too fussed on. Winner.
As I was already planning on making a cutter for my Halloween-themed gingerbread skeletons, I thought about shapes that I could use for several biscuits. I started with a generic ghost shape which turned out to be very versatile! It can also be used to make monster claws, gravestones or even tulips for a less spooky occasion, totally depending on how you decorate the biscuits. This is a great way to occupy older kids over the weekend and makes for a unique present too – you could make friends and family their very own personalised biscuits! Whether it’s in the shape of their pet, favourite flower or video game character, it’s sure to go down a treat, promise.