It's not easy baking, these days. There are so many distractions, what with Facebook, Twitter, texts, television, e-mail, work... you know, stuff that steals your attention away from what's truly important. Today was my day off, and I decided to devote my time to what I love dearly - baking.
My mission was clear: cookies for work and cookies for friends. The former ended up being what I can only describe as the quintessential 2010 holiday treat- Ginger Molasses Cookie. My ENTIRE APARTMENT smells like what I would assume Mrs. Claus' B.O. would smell like. Gingery, molassesy, baked goodness is what her pits would smell like, and I get that in my very own kitchen. Stellar!
The following is a way for you to also get into the swing of things, and impress yourself a little bit by breaking out of the mold and doing something other than Pillsbury cookie dough in a tub/tube/tray. That's child's play right there.
Ginger Molasses Cookies
3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup brown sugar (the darker the brown sugar, the richer the flavor... just sayin'), packed firmly
1/3 cup molasses (I used dark molasses for the same reason as the brown sugar... you do what you like, kids. I'm no dessert dictator)
2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsps baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp allspice
a pinch of nutmeg
1. Prep your baking sheets with parchment paper and rip your oven on to 350*F.
2. In your electric mixer set on medium speed, cream together your butter and two sugars until smooth and creamy. Add your egg and molasses and beat the snot out of it. I mean... seriously smooth, people. In a different bowl, put all the rest of your ingredients together and stir. Add slowly to the stuff in the mixer, put the plastic guard on (provided you didn't lose yours), and set it on "stir" until blended. It. Will. Smell. A. Mazing. I promise.
3. Now I don't want to get too nitpick-y... but I just discovered this is the best thing to make your cookies come out as annal-retentively perfect as they can get. And it's WAY faster using this method. Space your dough balls (hehe) about 2 inches apart (like... two thumb widths) on your parchment paper-lined cookies sheets, and bake until firm to the touch (10-12 minutes). Let them cool their heels on a wire rack after they've rested for a second on the pan and then enjoy with a glass of milk. Which I just did. Three times already. YUM.
And there you have it. The Spice Girls AND Mrs Claus would be so proud.