All content copyright Katrina Hall 2008 through 2018

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

spicy gingerbread stars

I seem to have been uninspired lately as far as muddling around in the kitchen, preferring instead to go on one of my reading jags.  I have had company though, and for the last two lunches I've tucked away a nice disc of this gingerbread in the fridge, ready to be pulled out and rolled into spicy cookies.  My cardboard box full of all kinds and seasons of cookie cutters has taken up permanent residency in a corner in the kitchen - I just pull it out, put it on a table, and let people pick their favorites.  It may be December, but if you're hankering for a cactus cookie, that's just fine.  And if you're a 3 year old, you'll choose the gnome - and then carefully eat only the hat.  Remember that?  I do - and I distinctly remember the agony of wanting a whole cookie, but afraid to decapitate a ginger man.  So maybe a cactus is safer.

We've had a little snow, thankfully not much - but chilly, and perfect walking weather, which I manage to fit in in between work and reading.  Let's hope I feel a little more inspired next week.

As I said, I keep some of this dough in the fridge, ready to be rolled out at a minute's notice.  It rarely lasts more than a week:  because I know it's there, I'll bake up some cookies for the neighbors or the grandchildren , and sometimes bake a batch and stick them in the freezer, because I know there are days when I suddenly want one - just one.

The recipe is from Craig Claiborne, from the New York Times cookbook, and the cookies are delightfully spicy and soft, but firm enough for mailing.

To make:

Line two baking sheets with foil or parchment.

1 stick (4 oz) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
2 teaspoons ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1 large egg
3/4 cup molasses
3 cups King Arthur all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder

Cream together the butter, brown sugar, and spices.
Add the egg and mix, then add the molasses.  Sift the flour, soda, and baking powder together, then add to the molasses mixture and mix until completely blended.

Pat the dough into an oval, wrap in plastic wrap, and chill for 30 minutes in the fridge.

Preheat oven to 350F.
Roll out half the dough to a 1/2 inch thickness.  Cut out shapes as you wish, placing the cookies about 1 1/2 inches apart.
Bake the cookies, one sheet at a time, in the upper third of the oven, for 10 minutes.  If your cookies are very thin, they will obviously need less time.
Let cool a few minutes, then use a spatula to transfer to a cooling rack.

Let the baking begin!


La Table De Nana said...

Love anything star..or heart shaped..and now..for the season..reindeer or mittens etc..

Thank you..I have the NYT cookbook..somewhere..this is much easier to find:)
Not inspired yet?
Do you Pin?

Pinterest and my fave blogs inspire me..Oh and J Oliver today and his turkey wellington:) now you!

Too much snow here..really.

katrina said...

Nana - YOU HAVE SNOW? I am not quite ready for snow, but it is in the forecast for the end of the week. Pinterest saves me! I love Pinterest, but I am a little uninspired about food right now - even a little uninterested. But there's always art and architecture, France, beautiful clothes, and design.....and lovely photos everywhere.
I may have changed his recipe a little, I cannot remember. I have two gingerbread cookie recipes and prefer this one. Enjoy the snow, *wink*

Barb said...

Mmmmmmmm! Love ginger cookies - and for some reason those stars really like I need to bite off a couple of points (or 3, or 4, or all of it ....). :-)

Barb said...

That was supposed to say "look like I need to bite off ...

I need to proofread better before I hit the send button.

katrina said...

Barb, you must be a nibbler - something I aspired to, but if I see something I want to eat I tend toward a huge first bite:)
I hope you'll get to make these, because it's the perfect balance of spices - not too much of any one, just a warm and fuzzy feeling as you eat them. And I wish you many! If you make rounds, you can make an ice cream sandwich that is dreamy, but not a big ice cream eater here - especially in winter: I am cold enough:)

Barb said...

Nibbler? Me? Nope -,I'm afraid I would just take a big bite of one point of that star, then the next point and then before you know it ... Gone! (I love cookies and these ginger cookies look mighty tempting :-).

diary of a tomato said...

Nice way to ease into the cookie season :)

katrina said...

Diary - I think of this cookie as my favorite winter cookie - although the crackly spice cookies give it a run for first place. Thanks for stopping by for a look!

elizabeth said...

It hasn't gotten above zero for four days here, time to bake some gingerbread!

katrina said...

Oh, you poor thing, Elizabeth! Not quite as bad here, but tonight 15 degrees. You're right - baking gingerbread cookies will warm you up!

Donna C. said...

I love gingerbread and I have the NYTimes Cookbook! I could do this! And I am going to do so this weekend. Thanks for the inspiration!

katrina said...

Dear Donna - I 'm delighted, and hope you got to make those cookies! I was a little puzzled, because the recipe was right there, so you didn't need your NYTimes cookbook, which I think is slightly different.

They are such a please to make!