Saturday, December 06, 2008

ginger cracks

2 c. all-purpose flour
1 1/2 t. baking soda
1/4 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
2 1/4 t. ground ginger
1 t. ground cinnamon
1/2 t. freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 t. ground allspice
1/2 c. shortening
4 T. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened
3/4 c. granulated sugar
1 large egg
1/4 c. unsulphured molasses
1 t. vanilla extract
2/3 c. chopped crystallized ginger
extra granulated sugar for rolling balls of cookie dough

Sift the first eight ingredients into a bowl. Set aside.
In the bowl of a mixer, cream the butter and shortening for 2 minutes. Add the sugar and mix on medium speed for about 1 minute. Blend in the egg, molasses, and vanilla; scraping down the bowl frequently with a rubber spatula. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients in two additions, beating until flour is absorbed. Blend in the crystallized ginger. The dough will be sticky.

Place dough in freezer for thirty minutes or refrigerate for 2 or 3 hours, or just stick it outside for a bit if it's blue-ass cold (you can wrap it in plastic wrap for this, but I just cover my mixer bowl with a plate).

Preheat oven to 375°. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.

Place granulated sugar in a bowl. Spoon rounded tablespoons of dough and form into balls. Roll the balls in granulated sugar and place them 3 inches apart on the cookie sheets. Leave about 1 1/2 to 2 inches between balls, as they will spread and flatten as they bake.

Bake for about 12 minutes, or until set. Let cookies stand on the sheets for 1 minute, then remove them to racks to cool completely.

Adapted from Baking by Flavor.

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