The smell of ginger, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg radiating throughout the kitchen is the essence of holiday baking. These thin, crispy wafer-like cookies are filled with molasses, brown sugar and pungent spices to give these cookies a nice kick.
Ginger snap cookies are the perfect holiday treat because they are easy and they store beautifully. The dough can be frozen for up to 1 month and the cookies are easily sliced off the frozen dough. Cooked ginger snaps will stay crispy in an airtight container for about a week.
When making ginger snaps, make sure you have fresh spices. We all have that one container of clove or allspice that’s been sitting in the cabinet for 3 years. Old spices will affect the flavor of the cookie. This Examiner’s new favorite find is at Fresh Pride supermarket in Norfolk. They have an amazing selection of herbs and spices in large containers. These are actually packaged by a small spice company in Connecticut and all containers are $3.99 – quite the deal!
Old Fashioned Spicy Ginger Snap Cookies – makes about 5 dozen
- 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 ¼ cup light brown sugar
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- ¼ cup molasses
- 3 cups flour
- 3 tsp ground ginger
- 2 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- 2 ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp ground nutmeg
- ½ tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp ground clove
- 1/8 tsp ground black pepper
- 1/8 tsp ground allspice
In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter until soft; add sugars and beat until light and fluffy. Next add the vanilla and eggs and mix until just incorporated. Add the molasses and beat until well mixed and fluffy; about 30 seconds.
Sift the dry ingredients and add to the wet mixture in thirds. Mix until the dough is just coming together, do not over mix at this point.
Line a loaf pan, this Examiner used a 9×5”, with plastic wrap so some of the wrap hangs over the sides. Transfer the dough to the loaf pan and press down until it is an even, cohesive mass. Cover with the excess plastic wrap and freeze overnight.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheets with parchment or aluminum foil sprayed with non-stick spray. Remove the frozen dough from the loaf pan and slice into thin slices; no more than a 1/8 of an inch. Place cookies on the prepared baking sheet leaving about 1” between cookies. Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the edges are deep golden brown. Cool on a rack and store in an airtight container.