All content copyright Katrina Hall 2008 through 2018

Sunday, October 11, 2009

gingerbread witch hats

To be honest, I'm not a fan of Halloween . I draw the line at creepy masks and fake blood, recorded screams, and mischief in the night. When the kids were really little, nothing was more fun than to read Tasha Tudor's Pumpkin Moonshine , and celebrate with spicy gingerbread cookies and flickering candles. I was okay with the frozen koolaid hands sitting in the middle of the punchbowl at school, too . But beyond that, I'm a wimp about Halloween.
My gingerbread cookie recipe is a great, all-purpose cut out cookie, good for every holiday that comes up. Valentine's Day, Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas teas. I roll them out to a half an inch, so they stay study and unbroken when handing out to Trick or Treaters. And they don't deliver so much sugar your kids are bouncing halfway to the moon, either. I found the witch hat cookie cutter at my favorite store in Keene, NH, Your Kitchen Store.
The cookies are deliciously spicy and soft, but firm.
Recipe from Craig Claiborne, NYT Cookbook:
To make:
1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 t. ginger
1 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. cloves
1 large egg
3/4 cup molasses
3 cups King Arthur flour
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. baking powder
Cream together the butter, brown sugar, and spices.
Add the egg and mix, then add the molasses.
Sift together the flour, soda, and baking powder, then add to the molasses mixture and mix until blended in well.
Chill the dough in a plastic bag in the fridge for a half hour .
Preheat oven to 350F.
Fit two baking sheets with foil or parchment.
Roll out half the dough to a 1/2 inch thickness, cutting into shapes as you wish. Place the cookies about 1 1/2 inches apart on the baking sheets.
Bake one cookie sheet at a time in the upper third of the oven for 10 minutes, then remove to cool.
This makes about 1 1/2 dozen cookies, depending on the size of the cookie cutter you use.


Martha said...

I've been looking for a good gingerbread cutout cookie recipe and this may be it -- love the hats! I love Halloween -- the kids trick or treating -- but not the tacky decorations or the scary things. So I'm with you!

katrina said...

Martha, I think you'll really like this recipe! Just enough spice to be interesting, and fairly forgiving dough, as long as you don't use too much flour while rolling out. I'm SO relieved you're with me on the restrained Halloween! Thank you!

Amanda said...

Love the hats Katrina. I just made gingerbread a few weeks ago. I made football shaped cookies :)

La Table De Nana said...

They are so cute!!!

katrina said...

Thanks, Amanda and Nana!

lisaiscooking said...

Your witch hats look great! I love gingerbread too, so I'll have to the Craig Claiborne recipe.

katrina said...

Thanks, lisa! I'd hoped to do a little fancy icing , but my pastry bag tips were just too big. Guess it's a good idea to think ahead, yes?

Miriam said...

Wow, how I looooove this mold! The cookies are so cute!

katrina said...

Thanks, Miriam - I thought the same when I found the cookie cutter in a kitchen shop! I'd never seen this particular size or design before and think it's PERFECT for Halloween.

Anonymous said...

I have used this gingerbread cookie recipe from your site and love it but noticed the one for the witches hat and the Christmas stars the recipes are slightly different as one uses 3 tablespoons more butter, extra teaspoon of cinnamon and 1/2 teaspoon of salt added. I usually use the one for a stick of butter with a pinch of salt. Just curious if it was a mistake or not.

katrina said...

Hi Anon - I think over the years I just started liking one recipe over another. They both are dirived from The New York Times cookbook from the 80's, I'll have to go back and check to see which - not a big change, just seems one seemed to be easier to roll out and re-use the scraps.

Sorry if I confused you