Back in the Sixties I discovered the perfect ginger cookie recipe. It was in Gourmet magazine; March l965 to be exact. It was an unforgettable melding of ginger, cinnamon, and cloves deepened with molasses. Then I lost the recipe. It had gone to that place where lost, misplaced and forgotten recipes go. This week I found my ginger cookie recipe in Gourmet magazines THE COOKIE BOOK. This book contains the single best cookie recipe from each year l941-2009.
GINGER SUGAR COOKIES
This is a recipe that makes you home smell like Christmas. The cookies deliver a flavour that lingers in your mouth long after the last bite.
Makes about 11 dozen cookies. Have all ingredients at room temperature. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
Cream 3/4 cup shortening or butter and gradually beat in l cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed.
Add in l egg and 1/4 cup molasses and blend thoroughly.
Sift 2 1/4 cups sifted flour with 2 tsp baking soda, l tsp each of cinnamon and ginger, 1/2 tsp cloves and 1/4 tsp salt.
Gradually blend the dry ingredients into the creamed mixture and chill the dough for 1 hour. This is important.
To form the cookies, scoop out a heaping teaspoon of the dough and dip the tops in sugar. Arrange the balls at least 3 inches apart on a parchment lined baking sheet. Press the dough down a little. Sprinkle each cookie with 2 or 3 drops of water (this gives them their characteristic crackled look).
Bake the cookies in a moderately hot oven (375F) for about 7 to 8 minutes, or until they are firm.
Use ordinary mild molasses. If you take the cookies out of the oven a bit early, when they have just set, they will be soft and slightly chewy. Leave them to bake a little longer, and they’ll get crisp. These cookies keep well and are even better on the second day.