Internet, may I tell you about these cookies? I really like these cookies. I have basically been making them nonstop since I found the recipe last November, to the point that friends are actually surprised and worried when they check my cookie jar and there are no Cookies of Gingery Goodness in there. I alleviate their concerns by pointing at the dough chilling in the fridge, getting ready for the next batch.
I am in love with these cookies. They’re chewy with the right level of crinkle on the outside, and very gingery and spicealicious (I have been thinking about adding some grated fresh ginger to the next batch to up the ginger factor, actually). In addition, they make your house smell awesome. They are, basically, completely fantastic.
This recipe is adapted from Kirsten at My German Kitchen In the Rockies, who featured them as part of her Advent baking last year. Since I a) don’t celebrate Christmas and b) really like cookies, I feel comfortable making them year-round. If you have strong feelings about holiday cookies, well, make up holidays for these cookies, because, trust me, you will not only want to have them once a year.
Cookies of Gingery Goodness, adapted from “Molasses Cookies”
Tools and supplies
- A pan for melting butter
- A whisk or flour sifter
- A spatula
- Cup and spoon measures
- Two baking sheets and parchment or silicone liners (liners are optional)
- A small bowl for sugaring the cookies
- 3/4 cup melted butter
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup dark molasses
- 1 egg
- 2 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup candied ginger, chopped
- Granular sugar for topping
Start by melting your butter and setting it aside to cool.
Chop your ginger loosely into small chunks. You don’t need to be super precise about it, but try to eliminate big pieces. I think some stores also sell crystallized ginger that’s prechopped for baking, in which case you get to skip this step. Lucky you!
Whisk or sift together the flour, baking soda, salt and spices. Make sure they are really well mixed to avoid pockets of baking soda, which taste like butt and completely defeat the point of making delicious cookies. Then add the chopped ginger, and set your bowl aside.
Combine the melted butter and sugar. I just use the melting pan as a mixing bowl, because why not, and I like to use a whisk. Protip: Do this in the sink, so that when you slop butter over the sides, which you probably will, it won’t be as upsetting. Then add the molasses. Use a spatula to scrape out every drop from the ¼ cup measure, because, I mean, molasses, right? Then whisk in your egg and beat the mixture so everything is well integrated.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Watch out for the ginger chunks, which sometimes create little flour pockets that are surprising to encounter in finished cookies.
Then stick the dough in the fridge for at least an hour to chill. You can safely leave it in there for a few days, actually, or freeze it if you don’t feel like dealing with it. Chilling makes it firmer and easier to work; if it’s warm in your house, consider chilling longer.
When you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375° and make your dough into little balls. Roll the balls in the sugar, and array them on your baking pans using the organizational scheme of your preference (you should have enough dough for 24 cookies).
I highly recommend using a pan liner because it facilitates cleanup, but you totally don’t have to. Personally, I use parchment paper, because I hate the environment, and love killing trees to meet my baking needs. I would never, of course, do anything as ridiculous as saving parchment paper between bakings to get more uses out of it. You might prefer Silpat, though. If you’re a tree-hugging hippie. Who can also afford Silpat. You can also just be all, whatever, pan liners are for poseurs.
Bake the cookies for around 8-10 minutes. When you take them out, they should look like this:
I know what you are thinking. You are thinking “But, s.e., these cookies are underdone! How should I politely inform you of this so you won’t be offended? Are you possibly trying to kill me with salmonella?”
To which I say: The magic of cookies is that they keep baking after leaving the oven. Leaving them on the hot cookie sheet for 10 minutes or so to cool down (which I recommend) will allow them to reach safe internal temperatures.
And it’s that slightly undertone state coming out of the oven that lets them crinkle up and form a soft, chewy interior. If you bake too long, they will be dry, and then they will not be Cookies of Gingery Goodness anymore. They will be something else.
Now if you'll excuse me, I need to go put some cookies in the oven.