12tablespoons(170 g or 1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
¾cup(255 g) molasses
2 ⅔cups(320 g) sifted confectioners' sugar
In a stand mixer fixed with the paddle attachment, combine flour, brown sugar, baking soda, spices, and salt on low. Stop the mixer, add the butter pieces and then mix at medium-low speed until the mixture is a sandy texture. Reduce mixer to low, gradually add the molasses and milk. Mix until the dough is evenly moistened, about 20 seconds. Increase speed to medium and mix dough until thoroughly combined, about 10 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the bowl if necessary.
Take half the dough and, between two large sheets of parchment paper, roll it until it is 1/4 inch thick. Repeat with other half of dough. Leaving the dough between the parchment paper, stack on a baking sheet and freeze until firm, 15 to 20 minutes. Alternatively, you can refrigerate dough for 2 hours or overnight.
When ready to cut cookies with firm dough, preheat oven to 350° F and line baking sheet with parchment paper.
Remove 1 dough sheet from the freezer or fridge and place on lightly floured work surface. Remove top parchment paper, carefully flip dough over and remove bottom parchment paper. Cut out gingerbread men with cookie cutters and place them on baking sheet. With dough scraps, re-roll the dough to 1/4 inch thick and repeat cutting process.
Bake in oven 8-11 minutes or until the edges are set. Let cookies cool on baking sheet for 2 minutes before placing them on a wire cooling rack. Repeat process for second dough sheet.
Add whisk attachment to mixer and beat meringue powder and water on medium speed until frothy, about 2 minutes.
Add confectioner’s sugar and mix on medium-low speed for about 3 minutes or until the icing holds a ribbon. Scrape down the sides of the bowl if necessary.
Transfer to an icing bag fitted with a small round tip (I used Wilton #2) and have fun decorating!
You can buy meringue powder online or find it at your local kitchen store.Store cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to five days.Dough may be frozen for up to three months. Let dough defrost in the refrigerator before rolling and cutting cookies. Cookies spreading: Keep the rolled out dough in the refrigerator until the oven is completely preheated. Cut the cookies quickly so they dough is still cold when the cookies go in the oven. If the cookies are still spreading, use less milk in the dough next time.Recommended tools: