christmas | cinnamon | cream cheese | cupcakes | decorations | frosting | ginger | lemon | molasses | recipe | seasonal | treats

Gingy’s gingerbread cupcakes with lemon cream cheese frosting & gumdrop “buttons.”

December 15, 2009

I’m sure most of you have seen Shrek. Regardless of having children or not, it’s a movie that by now most of the world I think has either seen, read about, or heard enough about to know about Gingy. There’s even been a Broadway play version of it. So unless you live under a rock, you know Shrek. But you may not know Gingy. Gingy is the little gingerbread man that Lord Farquaad tortured, cut his legs off and upon threatening to remove the gumdrops running down his body… Gingy cries “NOT THE BUTTONS… NOT THE GUMDROP BUTTONS!”

It’s adorable. Even a cold-hearted bitch like me thinks so. Gingy comes out of it just fine  (his legs reattached with some icing, of course) in the end and appears in two more movies, and a TV special, and video games. Lucky little cookie man has a bigger bankroll than most human actors at this point.

This time of year is definitely gingerbread time. Gingerbread, like shoo-fly pie, always amazes me. It’s amazing that you can use molasses to create something that smells so good, and tastes so good, when molasses is the vilest thing on earth, smell and taste wise. Anyway, I wanted to make something gingerbread for the holidays, but I didn’t want to go with the cliched gingerbread man and woman cookies… so I figured I’d make some gingerbread cupcakes in tribute to our little gingerbread buddy, Gingy. I added some gumdrop “buttons” on top for him too.



  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • ½ cup unsulfured molasses
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon Dutch process cocoa powder
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground allspice
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup hot milk


  1. Preheat the oven to 350° degrees F (175 degrees C). Butter or line with paper liners a 12-cup muffin tin.
  2. Cream 5 tablespoons of the butter with the white sugar. Add the molasses and the egg and egg yolk.
  3. Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, ginger, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg and salt. Dissolve the baking soda in the hot milk. Add the flour mixture to the creamed mixture and stir until just combined. Stir in the hot milk mixture. Pour the batter evenly into the prepared tin.
  4. Bake at 350° degrees F (175 degrees C) for 20 minutes or until slightly springy to the touch. Allow to cool a few minutes in the pan and remove to a rack to cool.



  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • ¾ cup sifted confectioners’ sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon lemon extract


  1. Cream the 2 tablespoons butter and the cream cheese together.
  2. Beat in the confectioners’ sugar until fluffy.
  3. Add the lemon extract and beat. When the cupcakes are cool, frost the tops with the frosting and serve.

You wouldn’t think of lemon and gingerbread together but its a really good combination, and smells fantastic. This is the lightest gingerbread cupcake you can imagine. Yes, light. It’s not at all like a rock, as you’d imagine gingerbread cupcakes to be. You can add some yellow food coloring to the frosting if you like as well, just to give people a hint as to the flavor. And of course, the gum drops on top! Mini ones would be cute too,  lined up in twos or threes like Gingy’s buttons… but I couldn’t find any myself. Listen, ya work with what ya got, my friends.

Before I go- I want to wish Brianne, my fellow Cooking the Books blogger, a very happy birthday! It’s today, and as an early birthday present she got a gorgeous KitchenAid Artisan mixer named Betty. I can attest to the fact that they make the best birthday gifts. *wink* Brianne, you’ll love it, it’ll complete your life in ways you never knew it could. Seriously. Lola has her own category here.

And as promised, here are some more pictures of the beautiful NYC at Christmas:


The angels in Rockefeller Center, and the big red balls… haha, they’re located on 6th Ave

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