“A baker took some ginger dough
And shaped a man from head to toe.
When it baked, the cookie fled
Here is what the cookie said:
Run! Run! As fast as you can!
You can't catch me, I'm the gingerbread man!”
-“The Gingerbread Man” Old traditional folk tale sung to the tune of “Jimmy Crack Corn”
Enjoy this children’s song, but don’t run away from the French Toast Gingerbread Men pictured here. Quick, delicious, and mostly nutritious, they make a wonderful Christmas season breakfast.
Ginger-spiced food, and gingerbread in particular, has been known in Europe in its modern form since around the 10th century when Armenian monk Gregory Makar taught gingerbread baking to priests in France. Gingerbread made the rounds of northern European countries like Sweden and Germany, and even journeyed to England. Queen Elizabeth I is said to have ordered gingerbread men made in the likeness of special guests.
Gingerbread is often associated with Germany. It is a popular staple of autumn-time fairs there. In fact, the people of Nuremberg elevated the baking of their version of gingerbread, called lebkuchen, exclusively to a guild of master bakers, the Lebkuchler! That city was considered to be the world’s gingerbread capital.
Gingerbread’s association with Christmas is connected to Nuremberg’s Christmas fairs, but some attribute the popularity of making gingerbread houses to the publication by Germany’s Grimms Brothers of the folk tale, “Hansel and Gretel.”
Baking real gingerbread men from scratch, or constructing beautiful gingerbread houses can be time consuming. But busy people on the go can borrow the icon, as I did with my French Toast men, and be rewarded with happy smiles by cooking something really easy. And anything “Easy” is right up my alley.
Feel free to use this picture as a reference to make your own French Toast Gingerbread Men. Or take a moment to peruse our 2012 12 Days of Christmas photo series for other ideas, as we roll out a new holiday food picture each day. And check out our smart cookbooks for people on the go. Priced below $8.00 they make wonderful virtual stocking stuffers and gifts for people who love delicious food that’s quick and easy to make. Remember, ebooks can be sent to anyone with an email address!
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Stop in tomorrow to see what we’re doing on the 9th Day of Christmas.