When it comes to Christmas cookies, I sure do love a good Ginger Snap. It’s the perfect combination of crunchy outside, chewy inside and the unmistakable flavor of Christmas spices. Yet, for years I struggled with a family recipe for ginger snaps that never seemed to work for me! This year I thought, forget the family recipe, I need one that works! So I took this recipe, re-worked it a bit by added a few additional spices, dipped them in turbinado sugar (so they sparkle), baked them up and out popped a batch of the most perfect Ginger Snaps ever. (Hallelujah) Just look at them; so happy they’re doing a little dance for you!
Ginger Snaps– adapted from Chez Panisse via David Lebovitz
Makes 40 cookies
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground clove
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
11 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup molasses
1 large egg, at room temperature
Turbinado sugar (sugar in the raw) for dipping
Stir together the dry ingredients. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter just until soft and fluffy. Add the sugar and continue to beat until smooth, stopping the mixer to scrape down any butter clinging to the sides of the bowl. Stir in the vanilla, molasses and egg. Mix in the dry ingredients gradually until the dough is smooth. Divide the dough in two equal portions and roll each on a lightly-floured surface until each is about 2-inches around. Wrap each in plastic wrap then roll them lightly on the counter to smooth them out. Refrigerate, or better yet, freeze the cookie logs until firm. (At this point you can freeze for up to one 3 months until ready to bake)
To bake, preheat the oven to 350F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Slice cookie dough into 1/4-inch rounds with a sharp knife. Dip one side and press firmly in a bowl of turbinado sugar and place sugar-side up on baking sheet, evenly-spaced apart. Leave a couple of inches, between cookies since they’ll spread while baking. Bake for 10-14 minutes, rotating the baking sheets midway during baking, until deep-golden brown. The cookies will puff up a bit while baking, then settle down when they’re done. Let the cookies cool two minutes, then remove them with a spatula and transfer them to a cooling rack.
Freutcake Notes: This is cookie number three in my Cookie Gift Guide. If you would like to see all the recipes click here.