Ginger Spice Cookies Recipe

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Categories: American, Cookie, Dessert, Grain, Snack, Spice

Submitted By: The Spice House; from Cindy Wallner of Evanston.

Ginger Spice Cookies Notes

These cookies have gone through several incarnations. Cindy Wallner sent us the recipe that her mother adapted from Bon Appétit, March 2000. She says "These are the best, snappiest ginger snaps! My mom made these with crystallized ginger from The Spice House, and they were phenomenal!"

When The Spice House started carrying a product known as ginger nibs in our shop, we adapted the recipe to use these convenient little uniform pieces of ginger instead of the crystallized ginger. They are really tasty and so much easier than cutting candied ginger into pieces. To make the cookies extra gingery, we roll them in a ginger sugar before baking. (See notes for making ginger sugar.) You can also roll them in Chicago Old Town spiced sugar for a delicious variation.

Photo courtesy of She Cooks He Cleans; for a gluten-free version of this recipe please visit their blog.

Ingredients
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup crystallized ginger, chopped
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup light molasses
  • sugar, to roll dough balls in before baking
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ginger juice (optional)
Serves / Yields

Makes about 30 cookies

Preparation Instructions

Combine first 6 ingredients in medium bowl; whisk to blend. Mix in crystallized ginger.

Using electric mixer, beat brown sugar, shortening and butter in large bowl until fluffy. Add egg and molasses and beat until blended. Add fresh ginger juice now, if you're using it.

Add dry flour mixture and mix just until blended. Cover and refrigerate 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly butter 2 baking sheets. Spoon sugar in thick layer onto small plate. Using wet hands, form dough into 1 1/4-inch balls; roll in sugar to coat completely. Place balls on prepared sheets, spacing 2 inches apart.

Bake cookies until cracked on top but still soft to touch, about 12 minutes. Cool on sheets 1 minute. Carefully transfer to racks and cool.

Can be made 5 days ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.

Helpful Hints

Arrange the soft, spicy cookies on a platter with apples and Vermont cheddar cheese; also serve hot cider or hot buttered rum.

Fresh ginger juice adds a great zip! You can easily juice fresh ginger root using a normal garlic press, but make sure it's free of garlic flavor first.

Here at The Spice House, we get ginger in 50 pound boxes. Once we repackage them into bags for sale, we always end up with a few ounces of just ginger flavored sugar at the end of the process. It seemed such a shame to it away, so we are always looking for uses for the ginger-sugar. That is how we came up with the idea of rolling the cookies in them. When we tried it, they were even yummier! (We also give it to a local bar manager who uses it to rim the glass of a really delicious ginger martini) We usually store extra ginger sugar in case anyone has a use for it, just ask us next time you are in the shop.

To make your own ginger sugar, just mix 1 teaspoon freshly ground ginger with a quarter cup of granulated sugar, and shake well.

When we have parties at The Spice House, we like to complement the platter of these cookies with thin slices of crystallized ginger dipped in chocolate. Our customers lamented that Macy's used to sell these many years ago and they missed them. We discovered that it was fairly easy to melt a high quality dark chocolate in the microwave. Just dip half the ginger in the bowl of chocolate, and then place on wax or parchment paper. Refrigerate until the chocolate hardens.

Quick Shopping List


China "Number One" Ginger, Whole Root Or Powder
Ground, in a glass shaker jar
In a 1/2 cup shaker jar, net wt. 1.75 oz.
$4.99
Vietnamese "Saigon" Cassia Cinnamon, Whole, Cracked or Ground
Ground, in a glass shaker jar
1/2 cup in shaker jar, net 2 oz.
$5.49
Cloves, Whole or Ground
Ground, in a glass shaker jar
1/2 cup shaker jar, net wt. 2 oz.
$6.99
Kosher Flake Salt
3 lbs.
$3.99
Crystallized Ginger, Slices, Chunks or Nibs
Sliced Pieces, in a resealable bag
4 oz.
$4.49
Comments:

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Sean R. Said:

Oh. My. God. This recipe is going in my arsenal of "foolproof entertainment foods."

I NEVER sign up anywhere just to leave a single comment, but these amazing cookies deserve it. I had some crystalized ginger that had been sitting unused for some time, and happened along this recipe and immediately thought of it. To me, it was nothing more that a way to keep the ginger from going to waste. But then, as I sat in the living room, something miraculous happened in my oven. I consider myself to be quite the chef, and my kitchen is like my laboratory, where all my works of culinary genius are created, but even I was amazed at the marvel I removed from my oven. The smell coming from them was heavenly, but alas! They were still far too soft to eat one. I would have to endure. I sat there, the smell enticing me like the aroma from a fresh baked pie entices a classic cartoon character. After what seemed like an eternity, it was finally time. As I sank my teeth into the divine baked treat, my taste buds had a taste orgasm, overloaded, and momentarily shut down while my brain processed the incredible information it was receiving. It was bliss. But then, tragedy struck! For reasons unknown to me, when I snapped out of my ecstasy, my precious cookies were gone! I am looking into this mystery and I swear I will bring those responsible for this heinous crime to justice. In the meantime, I need to find more crystalized ginger.

Thanks for the best damn cookies I've ever had.

Rating:
Make it Again? Sean R. would make this recipe again.

Jennifer G. Said:

Another awesome cookie. I made these and froze some, and discovered (to my waistline's dismay) that they are delicious even from the freezer. This recipe will become a permanent part of my repertoire. Thanks, Spice House!!

Rating:
Make it Again? Jennifer G. would make this recipe again.

Adele W. Said:

For years I've been making the Gingersnaps from your recipe on the spice packet I bought at the market in Milwaukee. recently I switched the butter with organic coconut oil---heavenly! I'll try this Ginger spice cookie next when my order arrives with more Nibs!

Rating:
Make it Again? Adele W. would make this recipe again.

Melinda B. Said:

These cookies are fantastic!! I will definitely be making these again. Thank you for the great recipe and wonderful tips!!

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Make it Again? Melinda B. would make this recipe again.

Nancy J. Said:

Can butter be used instead of shortening for these cookies? I prefer butter. I haven't tried baking them yet, but the reviews are impressive.

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Susan M. Said:

The best ginger cookie I've ever made! As beautiful to look at as they are delicious. Be sure to roll them in the ginger sugar and don't smash the ball down before baking. It will bake down by itself into the most perfect circle ever. This was the first recipe I made for Christmas. I made them mostly to keep the cook, me, happy while doing all the rest of my holiday baking. I wasn't planning on including them as gifts, but everyone who tried them said, "Oh. I love ginger cookies. My mother used to make them. These are the best I've ever tasted!" Even my 3-year old grandaughter said, "Do you have any more of those brown cookies?" The only change I made in the recipe was to soak the ginger nibs in a little juice for about half an hour since they were very hard, and I didn't want to crack anyone's teeth. Next time, instead I would just use the chunk ginger which is very soft and moist. Fantastic!

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Make it Again? Susan M. would make this recipe again.

Katie SH W. Said:

wait wait, because I didn't make them the first time, I didn't check the box, but of course, I WOULD make these cookies, because they are sooo good!

Rating:
Make it Again? Katie SH W. would make this recipe again.

Katie SH W. Said:

My friend came over and made these cookies--so good!
Moist and gingery...yay!

Rating:
Make it Again? Katie SH W. would not make this recipe again.

Jennifer S. Said:

Normally, I don't bother with desserts unless they have some form of chocolate. However, these cookies knocked my socks off! Every time I make them, people ask for the recipe. Try it! You'll like it. They're even better a day or two after they're baked.

Make sure you chop the crystallized ginger into tiny pieces. It's easier if you stick it in the freezer for awhile--it doesn't stick to your knife as much.

Rating:
Make it Again? Jennifer S. would make this recipe again.