Friday, December 7, 2012

'Tis the season, cookies, 9

Gingersnaps—a crisp cookie with a burst of molasses, ginger, cinnamon and clove flavors.   These cookies are easy to make and are one of the few cookies where I use shortening instead of butter and the mixer instead of a wooden spoon or my hands.  The shortening makes the cookies crisp and the “snap” in Gingersnap, I think, is supposed to mean super crisp.  Makes 5 to 6 dozen small to medium sized cookies that keep well. 


2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon ginger
¼ teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups sugar
¾ cup shortening
¼ cup molasses  [the original recipe called for light molasses but I use dark molasses for more flavor]
1 egg

Use an electric mixer to cream 1 cup of the sugar and the shortening until light and fluffy.  Add molasses and egg.  When well blended slowly add the flour, flavorings, baking soda and salt.  If the dough is too sticky to handle put it in the refrigerator for about one hour.  When ready to bake, pinch off small amounts and form into 1 to 1 ½ inch balls.  Roll the balls of dough in the remaining 1/3 cup sugar and place on greased cookie sheets.  Bake in a preheated 375 degree F oven for about 10 minutes.  

During the baking the cookies will flatten out and get cracks or crinkles on the surface.  This is supposed to happen!  I was worried the first time I made them as they looked so different when they came out of the oven.  One problem when using the dark molasses is that it is hard to tell when the cookies are done because they are dark colored to begin with so you will have to test one out after it has cooled to see if it is crisp enough.  My oven is “slow” so I often have to add a minute to two to the suggested baking times.  


From:  McCall's Cook Book, page 186

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