I thought I would start off by tempting you with a picture of the delicious cookies I made. What a great way to start off the new year, with cookies! Molasses cookies always remind me of my grandmother. There is something timeless, something comforting, about a good old-fashion spice cookie. They take me back to my childhood and the smell of my grandparent’s old gas stove. These cookies are spicy and sweet – the perfect type of treat to give you a fuzzy feeling in your tummy.
When I decided to make these cookies, I had a very specific idea. I wanted the taste of molasses cookies. Unfortunately, most molasses cookie recipes out there remind me of cardboard. They are often thin and become rock hard 20 minutes after cooling off. I wanted a lush, soft molasses cookie with an extra punch of ginger. I love ginger, and the standard amount in traditional ginger cookies just don’t do it for me. So, I went online, looked at some recipes and came up with this what is here. It’s an amalgamation of a few ginger cookie and molasses cookie recipes with my own special touch.
There are 2 ingredients that make these cookies really special. The first is a delightful little spice called mace. My boyfriend introduced me to it when he was making mulled wine. Apparently, most mulled wines in Germany call for mace. It is actually the red casing of a nutmeg, dried and ground up. Mace has an incredible taste. I don’t know how to describe except . . . warm. It adds another layer to the cookies. The second special ingredient is ginger sugar. Who wants to roll cookies in plain, old sugar? To give these cookies the taste of ginger I was looking for, I made a “ginger sugar”, which is simply candied ginger and sugar. Its heaven. Trust me.
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup light brown sugar
1 1/2 sticks of softened, unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup blackstrap molasses
1 large egg
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon mace
dash of salt
3 tablespoons candied ginger
2 tablespoons of granulated sugar
Cream butters and sugar until fluffy. Add molasses, egg and vanilla. Beat together.
In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda, salt and spices. Incorporate dry and wet ingredients.
To make ginger sugar, pour sugar and candied ginger into a food processor. Pulse to break up the ginger. Chop just enough so the candied ginger is broken up to the size of a mince.
Roll cookie dough into 1 inch balls. Roll the balls in ginger sugar. Place on a greased pan. Cook for approximately 12 minutes, or until cracks form in the cookies. Do NOT overbake!
Let cool and enjoy!