Because cinnamon is a natural preservative, these can last for several Christmas seasons, as long as they are stored with the same care as other potentially fragile ornaments. Ready to get started? All you need is:
- Cinnamon (a whole 4 oz. bottle)
- Applesauce (3/4 c. to 1 c.)
- Rolling Pin
- Cookie Cutters
- A Straw (for poking holes)
- Wire Rack (for drying)
- Optionally, a baking sheet to speed the drying process
To make cinnamon dough, mix a 4 – oz. bottle of cinnamon (yes, the whole thing) with 3/4 – 1 c. of applesauce. You might want to reserve a couple tablespoons of it aside to “flour” your dough with if you find that it’s a little bit sticky when you roll it out. It will also depend on how “wet” your applesauce is as to just how much you will need, so add 1/2 cup first and stir it up, and add it a tablespoon or two at a time until you have a nice stiff dough. All it needs to do is stick together as dough – it should be fairly dry.
Roll it out like you would do for cookies. I rolled mine between sheets of wax paper to keep things clean. 😉 But use the method you like best!
Once it’s 1/4 inch thick, cut your shapes with cookie cutters. I made gingerbread men and snowflakes both. If you want to see how the gingerbread men turned out, I invite you to come visit my post about them at my blog! You’ll want to poke a hole in them for hanging now, before you dry them. I found that a straw worked really well.
Now, you can either air-dry them for several days, or to speed things up, bake them in a very low oven (150F) for an hour on each side. If you opt to let them air-dry, you’ll want to turn them about twice a day, so they dry evenly.
If you opt to bake them, set them on a wire rack to finish drying. Mine needed another couple hours or so to harden totally.
Once they are dry, you can add a string and hang them! I’ve been enjoying their wonderful scent since I made them. It really does smell like the holidays are coming!