Christmas Cookies part 2

The ginger cookies were a bit fussy to make, requiring a saucepan to heat the brown sugar, molasses and spices together, but are very good, and the dough is very easy to work with, although I was initially concerned with would be sticky. The only change I might make is to add 1/2 teaspoon of ground white pepper, or up the ginger a bit, but they are pretty good as is!

Gingerbread Cookies

  • 2/3 cup molasses
  • 2/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 T ground ginger
  • 1 T ground cinnamon
  • 1 t ground allspice
  • 1 t ground cloves
  • 2 t baking soda
  • 1 c unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon-sized pieces
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 3 3/4 to 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 t salt

Bring molasses, brown sugar, and spices to a boil in a 4- to 5-quart heavy saucepan over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, and remove from heat. Stir in baking soda (mixture will foam up), then stir in butter 3 pieces at a time, letting each addition melt before adding next, until all butter is melted. Add egg and stir until combined, then stir in 3 3/4 cups flour and salt.  Preheat oven to 325°F.

Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface and knead, dusting with as much of remaining 1/4 cup flour as needed to prevent sticking, until soft and easy to handle, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Halve dough, then wrap 1 half in plastic wrap and keep at room temperature.

Roll out remaining dough into a 14-inch round (1/8 inch thick) on a lightly floured surface. Cut out cookies and transfer to baking sheets.

Bake cookies until edges are slightly darker, 10 to 12 minutes total.  Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

 

These sugar cookies are my favorite for decorating cookies, but of course I love citrus as a flavoring.

Citrus Sugar Cookies

  • 2 c flour
  • 1 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t salt (scant)
  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter (softened)
  • 1 1/4 t lemon zest
  • 1 1/4 t orange zest
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 1/4 c confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 egg

Stir together flour, baking powder and salt into medium bowl; set aside. Beat butter and zest in large bowl until light. Add sugars and beat until fluffy. Beat in egg. Add dry ingredients and stir until soft dough forms. Divide dough into thirds. Gather each third into ball; flatten into disks, wrap each in plastic and refrigerate until firm, about 4 hours.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Roll out one disk of dough on well-floured surface to 1/8- to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut out cookies and bake on ungreased cookie sheets until cookies turn brown on edges, about 15 minutes. Cool completely before frosting.

Frost with my favorite Citrus Frosting.

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