The Best Gingersnap Cookies Recipe I've Ever Made
I've always enjoyed baking. I started making bread from scratch when I was about 16 years old. Not every week, but just from time to time. A friend and I used to make a little extra income baking and decorating cakes for friends, and for some reason, just over the past two months or so, I've been in a protracted state of cookie mania.
First I perfected my technique for baking little round chocolate chip cookies, which I prefer to great big ones. I would rather eat three little ones than one big one... feels like I ate more cookie. Then, just before Thanksgiving I searched for a molasses and ginger cookie recipe in the style that my grandmother used to make.
I found what looked to be a classic ginger snap cookie recipe, and I gave it a whirl, following the directions and ingredient list to a T. It called for "melted margarine," and against my better judgment, I dutifully used melted margarine. The resulting dough was too wet to form into decent balls, but I did the best I could. The cookies were tasty, but physically not at all what I was looking for. They were essentially big sloppy puddles of cookie that would break apart when you tried to pick them up.
So I tried again, this time following my heart and substituting softened butter for "melted margarine." The cookie dough was the perfect consistency, and made beautiful little round balls, which I rolled in sugar before baking.
Last night I made, probably, my sixth batch of these cookies; I have to keep replenishing them, because now my friends and family are hoovering them like crazy. Follow these directions and I guarantee you'll find out what I mean...these cookies are an A+ in my book. Enjoy!
Super Kick-Ass Ginger Snaps
3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) butter, softened
1 cup white sugar (+ 1/2 cup for rolling)
1/4 cup molasses
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice (or 1/2 tsp. each clove & ginger)
In a medium mixing bowl, cream together the softened butter and the sugar, then add the egg and mix until smooth. Stir in the molasses. Combine the remaining dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, salt and spices, and blend into the molasses mixture. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for about an hour. Dough should be firm and cool before baking.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. I set my oven to 350, as 375 was overbrowning the bottoms of the cookies. Feel free to adjust to suit your particular oven. Remove cookie dough from fridge and roll spoonfuls of dough into spheres roughly the size of a 1 inch ball, roll in white sugar and place on an ungreased cookie sheet.
I cannot stress enough the importance of making small, uniform dough balls. Following this recipe, if you make proper-sized balls, you should get pretty much exactly 60 cookies. My cookie sheet holds 15 perfectly, so this recipe yields four sheets of ginger snaps.
Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. You can tell when they're about done, as the tops will start to develop small cracks. Pull them from the oven and cool on a wire rack.
Prepare to battle ninjas and pirates who will doubtless soon appear to abscond with your delicious cookies.