Tuesday, November 3, 2009

TWD: Sugar-Topped Molasses Spice Cookies

Today's Tuesdays with Dorie recipe was chosen by Pamela of Cookies with Boys. She decided on Sugar-Topped Molasses Spice Cookies on pages 76 and 77 of Baking: From My Home to Yours. I'm baking the recipes out of order this month, based on what my schedule allows for, so I included the recipe here instead of just the link. This recipe was super simple with super spectacular results.

Molasses spice cookies have a soft spot with me (and with many others). There's just something about the spiciness of the cookies that brings back fond memories. They have all the yummy-ness of gingerbread cookies but with an amazingly chewy texture. These are the best kind of cookies - slightly crispy edges that give way to a bendy, chewy middle. Unfortuantely, mine didn't have the pretty cracks in them that are usually seen on molasses cookies, but they more than made up for that in the way they tasted.

Sugar-Topped Molasses Spice Cookies
Makes 30 | Dorie Greenspan

2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
pinch cracked or coarsely ground black pepper
3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup molasses (not blackstrap)
1 large egg
1/2 cup sugar, for rolling

Whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, allspice and pepper.

Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the butter on medium speed until smooth and creamy. Add the brown sugar and molasses and beat for 2 minutes or so to blend, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the egg and beat for 1 minute more. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients, mixing until the flour and spices disappear. If some flour remains in the bottom of the bowl, to avoid overbeating the dough, mix in the last of the dry ingredients by hand with a rubber spatula. You'll have a smooth, very soft dough.

Divide the dough in half and wrap each piece in plastic wrap. Freeze for 30 minutes, or refrigerate for at least 1 hour. (The dough can be kept refrigerated for up to 4 days.)

Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone mats.

Put the sugar in a small bowl. Working with one packet of dough at a time, divide it into 12 pieces, and roll each piece into a smooth ball between your palms. One by one, roll the balls around in the bowl of sugar , then place them on one of the baking sheets. Dip the bottom of a glass into the sugar and use it to press down on the cookies until they are between 1/4 and 1/2 inch thick.

Bake the cookies one sheet at a time for 12 to 14 minutes, or until the tops feel set to the touch. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and, if the cookies have spread and are touching, use the edge of a metal spatula to separate them while they are still hot. Transfer the cookies to a rack to cool to room temperature. Repeat with the second batch of dough.

The cookies will keep for at least 1 week in the cookie jar. Wrapped airtight, they can be frozen for up to 2 months.


Cathy said...

I prefer molasses cookies over any other kind. I like that they usually aren't too sweet.

Nina said...

Your cookies look fantastic! Mine didnt have the "cracks" in them either--but I loved them! This was a great recipe!

Susan said...

Your cookies look terrific. I am baking these next week and really looking forward to eating them! :)

Romaine said...

I have yet to see cracks in anybody's cookies. I think they look terrific.

Melissa said...

Thanks so much for including the recipe; that was very thoughtful. :) I liked these cookies a lot - never thought of using black pepper, and next time I'll definitely use more.

As for cracks, I didn't get that either, really. I followed Dorie's method of flattening them with the glass, but normally when I make molasses cookies, I just flatten them slightly with a fork. That way, you get pretty fork lines - and pretty cracks. ;)

Amy I. said...

Hi Tia, all of your creations look delectable, especially these cookies.. perfect for the season. Thanks for stopping by and leaving some sweet comments on my blog. It's nice to "meet" you :)

Clivia said...

Your cookies look delicious! Thanks for posting the recipe.

Pamela said...

They look perfect! Thanks for baking with me!

Steph said...

I don't usually like spices, but for some reason, I love molasses spice cookies. The last time I made molasses cookies, I didn't get cracks either. They still look yummy and the texture is the most important part.

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