Gigi’s Molasses Cookies

December 12, 2011 § 1 Comment

Well, it looks like we are now within the “two weeks until Christmas” window and thankfully my holiday cheer has kicked in. I’d like to think it was the smell of fresh-cut firs and pines or the appropriate drop in temperature, the twinkling lights and festive gatherings, but honestly there is only one thing that has actually gotten me in the mood: cookies.

As a participant in a cookie swap, I had the pleasure of sending out three dozen of my favorite holiday cookies to strangers across the country. In return I received batches from two people (and am still waiting on the third!). Basically, last week I felt like an elf, what with shipping and receiving and re-gifting (to some much deserved coworkers) so much sugar in baked forms that I couldn’t help but absorb their cheerful goodness through my skin. And teeth. And stomach.

Anyway, here is the recipe for the lovely molasses numbers that I contributed:

Gigi’s Molasses Cookies

Gigi is my great-grandmother. No one makes them better than she did, but with some tweaking of the cooking time I think I have almost got it down! The main “secrets” are using only margarine and chilling the batter for as long as possible (up to 2 days) before baking. This allows for full flavor fusion and greater ease of forming the balls that are then rolled in sugar. Now please, make these and rejoice!

12 Tablespoons (1 ½ sticks) Margarine
1 Cup Sugar
¼ Cup Dark Molasses
1 Egg
2 Teaspoons Baking Soda
2 Cups Flour – Sifted
½ teaspoon Ground Cloves
½ teaspoon Cinnamon
½ teaspoon Salt
Extra sugar for rolling dough

Preheat oven to 350° (or, for puffier cookies, 375° and bake for 7 minutes)
Melt the margarine and allow it to cool.
Mix the sugar, molasses and egg together in a large bowl.
Mix in the melted margarine.
Sift baking soda, flour, and spices and add to the mixture.
Chill the batter (dough will keep in the refrigerator for two days.)
Roll dough into 1-inch balls.
Roll balls in sugar.
Place on greased cookie sheets. (12 balls to a sheet.)
Press balls lightly with a fork.
Bake 7-9 minutes (depending on oven temp).  Do not overbake.
Let cool on cookie sheet for 5 minutes.
Breathe deeply and inhale the spiced air. Eat. Enjoy.
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