“What do you want for Christmas?” I asked my 8 year old daughter.
“Ummm…” she thought for a while.
“Mom, I don’t know what I want. But can we please make gingerbread cookies? It’s my favorite part about Christmas.”
As much as I’d love to think this has everything to do with the mother-daughter bonding, I’m going to guess she’s fallen deep in love with the recipe I’ve found and adapted over the years.
Most of the recipes I’ve tried over my baking years? Dog bones. This one is bursting with ginger (I added extra), nutmeg, a bit of cocoa and molasses. And they actually age well (who doesn’t?). So, you can make them a week or so before gifting them (or gorging on them) if you have a good cookie tin.
In all honesty, this is an adaptation of an adaptation originating from a Food & Wine gingerbread recipe from December of 1997.
What I love about it, there’s every spice that screams winter holiday. I also love that this recipe uses an entire cup of molasses. Most call for only a couple of tablespoons.
It’s so simple, too! Mix the dry ingredients, whip up the wet ingredients. Slowly combine. Chill, roll, cut and bake. Poof. Gorgeous cookies.
Enough of my rambling. Follow the recipe below and let me know how yours turn out.
Classic Gingerbread Cookies
- 4 1/2 cup Flour
- 2 tbsp Ginger
- 2 tbsp Cocoa powder
- 2 tsp Cinnamon
- 1 tsp Ground Cloves
- 1/4 tsp Ground Nutmeg
- 1 tsp Baking Soda
- 1 tsp Salt
- 3/4 cup Butter
- 3/4 cup Brown Sugar
- 1 cup Molasses Unsulphered
- In a medium sized mixing bowl, mix together all dry ingredients. Flour, spices, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
- With a stand mixer or hand mixer, beat butter and sugar together until it's light and fluffy.
- Add lightly beaten egg to the butter and sugar mixture, still using the stand or hand mixer.
- Slowly add the molasses to the butter, sugar and egg until it's all blended.
- Add the flour mixture about 1/4 cup at a time. Add little by little until all the dry ingredients are incorporated. Mine is always a soft consistency at this point, which will stick easily to your hands. It shouldn't be crumbly.
- Divide the dough in two or three clumps, wrap in plastic and let it chill for at least 3 hours. I always let it chill overnight to let the flavors mix.
- Once it's chilled, roll out the dough using a floured surface and a rolling pin. 1/4 inch thickness is good. 1/8 inch thickness is the thinnest you should roll it out.
- While you're using your favorite gingerbread or holiday cookie cutters to create your cookies, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Bake for about 10 minutes. I have a convection oven that bakes a little faster. But you shouldn't have the cookies in the oven for more than 12 minutes.
- Cool on a wire rack before decorating.