Twenty-Five Days of Cookies: Spiced Molasses Cookies

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Christmas is just ten days (gulp) away and what better way is there to countdown to the big event than to feature a cookie recipe each day? Think of it as a cookie recipe advent calendar. And to fill that advent calendar I’m featuring twenty five of my favorite holiday cookie recipes that are sure to fill your holidays with cheer. Bake them to fill your cookie trays, bring them to a cookie swap or eat them yourself; they are guaranteed to bring about holiday joy. And if you love baking as much as I do, making them is a fun filled gift unto itself. Enjoy!

No other flavor profile says winter to me more than the warm and fragrant combination of cinnamon, ginger, cloves and nutmeg. And when you add in molasses you are just adding rich complexity to an already delicious and comforting flavor combination. There is just something about this spice blend that invokes images of snowy days spent around a crackling fire. So what could be better than combining all of these flavors into a single cookie?

This recipe is from Williams Sonoma and brings together everything a cookie should be. The flavors are reminiscent of a rich gingerbread while the cookies are crisp on the outside and chewier than a traditional gingerbread cookie. And because the dough is rolled into balls rather than cut out with cookie cutters, they come together in a snap.They really couldn’t be easier. I love to eat these warm and I’m sure you will too.

SPICED MOLASSES COOKIES

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon salt

12 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 cup firmly packed brown sugar

1 egg, at room temperature

1/4 cup molasses

4 tablespoons granulated sugar

  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice, cloves and salt. Set aside.
  • In a separate larger bowl, use an electric mixer to beat together the butter and brown sugar until fluffy.
  • Beat in the egg and the molasses.
  • Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture, beating until well blended.
  • Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 8 hours.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and lightly coat two baking sheets with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Place the sugar on a shallow plate.
  • Using your hands, roll the dough into 1 1/2 inch balls then roll the balls in the sugar.
  • Place the dough balls on the baking sheet, setting them 2 inches apart.
  • Using the tines of a fork, press the fork into each cookie, pushing down to create a decorative top.
  • Bake until just set and lightly browned, 9-11 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes before removing them from the baking sheets.

Yields: 45 cookies

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