August 17, 2011 § 4 Comments
This is one of the most heavily-tested-before-posting recipes on this website, but for no good reason, really. They are fantastic every time I make them and I should have posted them months ago, but sometimes I just didn’t feel like taking pictures or I took pictures and they looked terrible because they were taken at midnight or I accidentally deleted the pictures or I just … didn’t blog. Sometimes blogging is hard. Or, I am a lazy blogger. Oops.
I first made these for my Dad a few months ago (for Father’s Day …) because he loves ginger snap cookies. These aren’t quite ginger snaps because they are a bit chewy with a slightly crisp exterior (enhanced by granulated sugar), but that’s okay because I like them better this way. Since I have made these so many times before posting, I have gotten a chance to experiment slightly with the flours and the spices here and I have used slightly different spices, or at least ratios of spices, each time I have made these. AP flour and whole wheat pastry flour both work great. For a more classic “gingersnap” flavor, I would probably tone down the cloves or replace them with a more mild allspice or nutmeg and maybe replace the cardamom with cinnamon for a less bold/floral flavor. Any mix of your basic “warm” spices works great, just don’t be too heavy-handed. Matt preferred a more mild spice combination (the last batch I did had 1 1/2 tsp ginger, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 nutmeg), but that didn’t keep him from eating three or four of these last night. Matt requests these cookies just about every week now and when I send cookies back to my family again (in a couple weeks for a July/August/September birthday combo), these will be my Dad’s share.
slightly adapted from Joy the Baker
yields 2 dozen large cookies
– 1 1/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
– 1 cup AP flour
– 2 tsp baking soda
– 1/4 tsp salt
– 2 tsp ground ginger
– 1/2 tsp ground cloves
– 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
– 3/4 cup butter, room temp
– 1 cup brown sugar
– 1 egg
– 1 tsp vanilla extract
– 1/4 cup molasses
– approx 1/4 cup granulated sugar*
*for rolling the dough: you could alternatively try turbinado sugar for a crunchier exterior or powdered sugar for a more delicate exterior
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Sift together flours, baking soda, salt, ginger, cloves and cardamom. In a separate bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Slowly beat in egg, vanilla extract and molasses (add vanilla with egg white and beat until mostly incorporated, then add yolk and beat until mostly incorporated and then add molasses until mostly incorporated). Add and beat in dry ingredients in 2-3 batches until just incorporated. At this point you may have to refrigerate the dough depending on the temperature of your kitchen: if the dough is very soft and you cannot form firm ball of dough, pop it in the refrigerator for a half hour or so. Form 2 tbsp sized balls of dough and then roll them in the granulated sugar to cover completely (the dough will be easier to handle if you form all of the balls first and then roll them in sugar). Place balls of dough on a lined baking sheet with several inches of room between them (they will spread quite a bit so I put about 5-6 rounds on my 9×13 sheet). Bake for 10-12 minutes, allow them to sit on the baking sheet for several minutes longer and move to a cooling rack with a wide spatula to cool completely.