Friday, November 25, 2016

Ginger Cookies with Dark Chocolate Chunks

It’s time for Christmas cookies! Last year I didn’t bake very many Christmas cookies, but I don’t think that I’ll make the 12 days of Christmas cookies like I have done in years past, but I do have several recipes that I want to try. You can’t have Christmas cookies without some sort of ginger cookie, although, to be honest, I would bake these cookies any time of year because I really like ginger.

This is a cookie that you could make in one evening, but it is a lot easier to divide up the work and make the dough one day and bake the next. It has been a busy week, with Thanksgiving, taking care of a kitty while his kitty parents are gone, and amid all of this, my car wouldn’t start. Needless to say, the week has been a bit crazy. It only takes a couple of minutes to make the dough. Then refrigerate. Then shape the dough, refrigerate again, and then bake. Easier not to have to do everything at once.

This is a chocolate ginger cookie, with chocolate coming from a small amount of cocoa powder in the dough and dark chocolate chunks. They are quite dark, thanks to the molasses. The molasses puts these cookies on the edge of bitter, but that is balanced by the ginger and chocolate. They are quite soft when they come out of the oven, but don’t bake them longer; better under baked that over baked. I liked these cookies a lot, they are an interesting mix of flavors and the perfect first Christmas cookie of the season.

Ginger Cookies with Dark Chocolate Chunks
1 1/2 cups plus 1 tablespoon flour
1 1/4 teaspoons ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
½ cup butter, room temperature
1 tablespoon freshly grated peeled ginger
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup molasses
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons boiling water
7 ounces dark chocolate chunks
Granulated sugar, for rolling

In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, ground ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and cocoa; set aside. In a large mixer bowl, beat the butter and fresh ginger on medium until light.  Add the brown sugar and mix until combined, then add the molasses and mix until combined.

In a small bowl, dissolve the baking soda in the boiling water. Add half of the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix on low. Mix in the baking soda mixture and then add the remaining flour mixture, stirring on low until combined. Stir in the chocolate chunks. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate 2 hours or overnight. 

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line two baking sheets with silicone baking mats. 

Shape the dough into 1-1/4 inch balls. Place on a plate and refrigerate for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, roll the balls in sugar and place on the prepared baking sheets. 

Bake for 10-12 minutes, there will be some cracks in the cookies, but will still be soft. Half way through the baking time, rotate the baking sheets. Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes. Remove to a wire rack to cool completely.  

Recipe from Handle the Heat

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