Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies

Christmas is upon us! Quick- what cookies are you leaving out for Santa?

Sugar? Bleh.

Chocolate Chip? As if.

Oatmeal Raisin? Evaluate what you're doing with your life.

What Santa (or the person who gets to host Christmas this year and has thus decided to dub herself Miss Santa 2015 - sorry, Miss Columbia) really wants this year is something chewy, crunchy, spiced and sweet.

Santa wants these yummies:

Look at that crackly top! The crunchy sugar crystals! The gooey soft center!

I won't lie- this recipe is a little time consuming. Not because there are a ton of steps, but because the dough has to - HAS TO - be thoroughly chilled in order to be workable. This step is crucial, otherwise you'll end up with a cookies sheet shaped mega-cookie.

Santa would still eat a mega-cookie. But not oatmeal raisin.

Okay- maybe oatmeal raisin if that was the last cookie on earth. But only then.

On a personal accomplishment note, this recipe achieved two things for yours truly:

1. I overcame my fear of cooking/baking with molasses- a fear that was brought on many years ago by a botched gingerbread cake recipe in which I used blackstrap molasses and had to throw the entire thing away. (Seriously guys- it was one of the worst things I've ever tasted.)

2. I completed the full 2015 52 Weeks of Cooking Challenge - woo! 52 weeks of coming up with a recipe to incorporate the weekly theme/ingredient, no matter what was going on! Want to get in on the action for 2016? Click here!

Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies
Recipe courtesy of Gimme Some Oven

  • 1 1/2 cups butter, softened to room temperature (I used 2 sticks salted, 1 unsalted)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup molasses (I used mild flavor)
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 cups flour
  • 4 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4-1 tsp salt, depending on choice of salted/unsalted butter
  • Sugar, for rolling
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, spices and salt. Set aside. 

In a stand mixer, beat together butter and sugar for about a minute on medium speed- until light and fluffy. Scrape down the bowl, then add in molasses and eggs. Beat until incorporated, stopping to scrape down the bowl as needed. 

Add the dry ingredients slowly- being sure to scrape down and check the bottom of the bowl as you go- the dough is sticky! 

Cover the dough and chill for several hours, until the dough is firm all the way through. 

Preheat the oven to 375.

Roll dough into 1 inch balls, roll in sugar and place on baking sheets. Chill dough balls for 10-15 minutes (20-30 if the dough was still soft in spots).

Bake for 8-10 minutes- remembering that the general rule for chewy/soft cookies is to bake for the lowest amount of time, allow to rest on the cookie sheet for 2 minutes, and then remove to a rack to cool. 

Enjoy- and happy holidays!

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