“What is a mug perch?” you are probably asking. Probably what I would have thought too before I came across these tiny baked wonders online and was captivated but how cute they were. I don’t know if they are offically called mug perches, but it seems to be the most appropriate thing to call them. Resting merrily on the side of your hot chocolate or Irish coffee they instantly make any hot drink more festive and cheery, and are guaranteed to get a good reaction from any guests you might have visting over the holiday season. Last year I attempted mini gingerbread houses, which unfortunately turned out a lot more gargantuan than the dainty little dwellings I had envisioned. This year I decided to take a less ambitious approach and stuck to simple christmas trees, much less stressful and you can churn out loads of them (with plenty of dough left over if you do fancy attempting a little house!)
I used a standard gingerbread recipe that I found on the BBC website (posted below), but you could use any biscuit or shortbread recipe. If you do use the BBC recipe I would recommend halving the amount as I felt like it produced enough to bake a whole forest! Before popping them in the oven I lay them out on a sheet of baking paper and put a slit with a sharp knife about half way up each one and gently split them slightly apart. After baking them for about 9 minutes I took them out and immediately went over the split again with a knife as they will join together in the hot oven. A little tip – decide what mugs you might be using before creating the little gap – if you have mugs with thick rims you will need to make it a bit wider. I lost a lot of little gingerbread trees before I realised this! They do tend to be a little fiddly anyway so be prepared to snack on a few broken ones until you get the hang of it. Leave them to cool and harden before testing them out on your mug and wait for the delight on your friends’ and familes’ faces when you casually serve one up next time they ask for a hot drink! They should keep for a least a week if stored in an airtight jar.