Did everyone have a lovely weekend? Did your weekend include anything fantastic or earth-moving, like getting a brand new front-load washer and dryer that makes little musical sounds (rather than deafening buzzes) when a cycle is complete? How about rockin’ out for two nights straight to the Beatles Rock Band with your hubs? Hmmmm…. did you make any cookies?
Clearly, you have some catching up to do. And while I can’t buy you a new washer or teach you to play the guitar on expert (because really – who does that? oh right – me!), I can give you a virtual shove in the general direction of your kitchen. Because, for the next week or so, I have a few tricks up my sleeve. I will lure you with cookies.
Is it working yet?!
What about now?
Alright. Let’s start with my favorite, and if you act right (as my mom used to tell us in the k-mart – “Straighten up and act right!”), I’ll give you some more. But since I’m callin’ the shots around these parts, I get first pick – and I’ll pick one of my favorite things in the whole wide world – GINGER.
And these ain’t your average break-a-tooth gingernap or tastes-like-cardboard gingerbread man cookies. These here are, for lack of a better term, too legit to quit. Yeah – you know a girl is not to be reckoned with when she breaks out the Hammer lyrics.
Not just one, not even two, but three – count ’em, three – types of ginger. You’ve got the crystallized pieces, which I was lucky to even have since I seem to pluck cubes to snack on as if they were m&m’s, and then you’ve got the fresh ginger root, shaved from the nubbly rhizomes via microplane, and last but not least – the traditional, the it-can’t-be-a-ginger-cookie-without-it, ground ginger. Can we say trifecta, friends?
Then, THEN, you take all this lovely lovely gingery goodness and you add to it, light and dark brown sugar and molasses (molasses!), among other things. Kids, it don’t get any better.
Weeeeeelllll, maybe a little better, if you’re into getting your hands coated in ginger cookie batter… Are you in? You roll lil’ tablespoons of dough into balls and – whoa Nelly – you roll said balls into……..sugar! Absolutely brilliant. And easy as, well, easy as making cookies on a chilly Sunday afternoon.
Want more cookies? Can ya handle more cookies? Alright then – prove it. I’ll let you run the show for a change: leave a comment (don’t be shy, first-timers) and put in your vote for round 2: chocolate-cayenne, peppermint-white chocolate, or clementine-cardamom.
Triple Ginger Cookies
Adapted from Bon Appetit, December 2009; makes ~50
[cookies should keep at least 4 days if stored in airtight container]
2 1/2 c all purpose flour
1/2 c minced crystallized ginger
2 t baking soda
1/4 t salt
3/4 c (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temp
1/2 c (packed) golden brown sugar
1/2 c (packed) dark brown sugar
1 large egg, room temp
1/4 c molasses (Grandma’s preferred)
2 t finely grated fresh peeled ginger
1 1/2 t ground ginger
1 t ground cinnamon
1/2 t ground cloves
1/3 c sugar, use raw/turbinado if you have it
Position 1 rack in top third and 1 rack in bottom third of oven; preheat to 350°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Whisk flour, crystallized ginger, baking soda, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in medium bowl. Using electric mixer or stand mixer, beat butter in large bowl until creamy and light, about 2 minutes. Gradually beat in both brown sugars. Beat on med-hi speed until creamy, about 3 minutes. Add egg, molasses, fresh ginger, ground ginger, cinnamon, and cloves. Beat to blend. Add flour mixture in 2 additions, beating on low speed just to blend between additions.
Place 1/3 cup sugar in small bowl. Measure 1 T dough. Roll into ball between palms of hands, then roll in sugar in bowl to coat; place on baking sheet. Repeat with remaining cookie dough, spacing cookies 1 1/2 to 2 inches apart.
Bake cookies until surfaces crack and cookies are firm around edges but still slightly soft in center, about 12-13 minutes. Cool completely on sheets on rack.