The warm and cozy smell of fresh-baked ginger cookies draws everyone to the kitchen. With a crispy, sugar-coated outside and soft chewy middle, these cookies will become a family favorite the first time you make them.
There’s always a reason to bake ginger cookies; my reason a few weeks ago was to give to my sister for her birthday (she LOVES anything ginger) and to my grandma for Grandparent’s Day. The smell of molasses brings me back 25 years to my grandma’s kitchen with her warm cookies baking in the oven. My grandpa loved her crispy molasses cookies because he liked dunking them in his coffee—something my sister still does.
Giant Ginger Cookies
Make the cookies!
In a medium bowl, stir together flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and salt; set aside.
In a large bowl, beat shortening on low speed for 30 seconds to soften. Gradually add the 2 cups of sugar. Beat until combined. Beat in eggs and molasses. Beat in as much of the flour mixture as you can with the mixer and then use a wooden spoon to stir in the remaining flour mixture.
Shape dough into 2-inch balls using 1/4 cup dough. Roll dough balls in the 3/4 cup coarse sugar. Place 2-1/2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 350˚ for 12-14 minutes or until cookies are light brown and puffed up; being careful not to overbake or they will not be soft inside. Cool on cookie sheet for 2 minutes and then set them on a wire rack to cool completely. Store cookies in a covered container for 3 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
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This recipe is from the Better Homes and Gardens 100 Best Cookies 2008 magazine but it is also on their website here. The magazine says that these cookies were shown on the cover of the November 1998 Better Homes and Gardens magazines and that it prompted “scores of calls from readers saying they were the best ginger cookies ever.” I (and my family) agree.
What are some baking smells that remind you of visiting your grandparents when you were a kid?