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2 1/2 cups (625 mL) all-purpose flour
2 tsp (10 mL) ground ginger
1 1/2 tsp (7 mL) cinnamon
1/2 tsp (2 mL) each allspice, salt and baking soda
1/2 cup (125 mL) unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup (175 mL) brown sugar
1/3 cup (75 mL) fancy molasses
Nutrients per cookie
0.8 g protein
2.1 g fat
10 g carbohydrates
11 mg calcium
40 mg sodium
Crisp and sweetly spiced, these are the ultimate gingerbread cookies -- at least we think so!
By Bonnie Schiedel
Preparation time 20 minutes
Refrigeration time 30 minutes
Baking time 7 minutes
Makes 4 dozen cookies, 2 inches (5 cm) wide
1. In a large bowl, using a fork, stir flour with spices and baking soda. In a medium-size bowl, using a wooden spoon, stir butter with sugar until evenly mixed. Beat in egg, then molasses. Make a well in centre of flour mixture, then stir in molasses mixture until most of flour is absorbed. Gently knead to evenly mix.
2. Form dough into 4 balls, then flatten each into a disc. Wrap separately in plastic and refrigerate until firm, 30 minutes or up to 5 days. Freeze up to 1 month if making ahead.
3. When ready to bake, remove dough from refrigerator. Let stand at room temperature to soften enough for easy rolling, 10 to 15 minutes. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Lightly spray 2 baking sheets. Place a disc of dough between 2 sheets of waxed paper. Roll dough no thicker than 1/4 inch (0.5 cm). Cut out shapes with cookie cutter. Place on baking sheets 1 inch (2.5 cm) apart.
4. Bake one sheet at a time in centre of preheated oven until edges begin to darken, 7 to 10 minutes. Remove cookies to a cooling rack. Repeat with remaining dough. Store in a cool place up to 1 week or freeze up to 1 month.
For variations, following the recipe above, try these:
Cracked black pepper & lemon: Stir 1 tbsp (15 mL) finely grated lemon peel and 1 1/2 tsp (7 mL) freshly cracked black pepper into flour mixture in step 1. Continue with recipe as written.
Chocolate sugary: Before baking chocolate cookies (above), brush with water, then sprinkle with granulated or coarse sugar. Bake as above.
Chocolate gingerbread: Finely chop 3 squares (about 3 oz/90 g) bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate. Knead gently into dough. Roll out and cut into shapes. Bake as directed above.
Ginger-pecan: Gently knead 2/3 cup (150 mL) finely chopped pecans into dough. Roll into 1-inch (2.5-cm) balls. Arrange on baking sheets. Press a pecan into centre of each. Bake 8 to 12 minutes.
First published in Chatelaine.com's December 2008 issue
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