Welcome Back to Cookie Monday! Enjoy this week’s installment:
The week before Christmas is a big week on a few levels. It’s finals week for me, which means that right now I’m about to be buried under every calculus test I’ve taken and two inches worth of microeconomics notecards. If someone asks me why the ground is slippery, I’ll probably say that it’s because there’s a low coefficient of friction as well as a small normal force, because I’ve been studying everything I know about mechanics in preparation for Thursday morning.
This week is also one of the last weeks before college applications are due, which means that I have become an expert at distilling any topic under the sun into a 250 word essay that in one way or another will find its way to an admissions committee. I have been doing my part to increase the Christmas bonuses of the higher level management personnel at the Common Application—one of their kid’s Christmas gifts will probably be financed by one of the three applications I sent in yesterday.
And yet, despite being caught in the midst of scantrons, paperwork, and personal statements, this week really is one of the most wonderful times of the year. Our tree is now decorated and the Christmas playlist is on repeat (albeit with a few Weird Al songs that mysteriously starting playing after “I Saw Three Ships”). It’s time to wrap presents and go to holiday parties with the entire neighborhood. When the sun sets early in the evening, there’s nothing better than staying in a cozy warm house and watching Love Actually while eating a few Christmas treats. This holiday comes but once a year, so I’m doing my best to savor it—starting with a chewy ginger cookie full of fresh ginger and molasses that tastes like all of Christmas wrapped up into one spicy, flavorful bite.
Recipe from Ellin Klor
Makes about 3 dozen cookies
2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon table salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons dried ginger
2 teaspoons baking soda
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup molasses (mild, not blackstrap)
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ granulated sugar, for coating the cookies
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, cinnamon, dried ginger, and baking soda and set aside. In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar for 2-3 minutes until light and fluffy. Add the egg, molasses, ginger, and vanilla, and beat until well combined. Add the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until just combined. Scrape down the bowl to ensure all of the flour is incorporated, then chill for 30 minutes in the fridge.
- While the dough chills, preheat the oven to 325F, line two baking sheets with parchment paper, and place the remaining granulated sugar for coating in a shallow bowl.
- Once the dough has chilled, roll heaping tablespoons of the dough into balls, then roll in the sugar. Place 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets, then bake for 11-13 minutes, until the cookies have spread and moist fissures have formed. Let cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.