Sunday, January 19, 2014

Alice Medrich's Ginger Cookies

I’ve been ignoring my blog. I’ve been procrastinating this post for the longest time. I’ve typed up many drafts, then stoped mid-sentence and decided what I’m typing is stupid and no one is remotely interested in my shopping adventures in New York City or the fact that I failed as a food blogger and only went to two (!!!) bakeries in one of the greatest cities of the world (though I did have an amazzzing ogre-sized chocolate chip cookie and a salted pecan butter cookie). 

I haven’t been motivated to do anything. I even have pictures from an ice cream circa November 2013 that I haven’t bothered with. I blame work, it’s exhausting mentally and physically. I can barely keeping my eyes open Monday to Friday (sometimes Saturdays too), when I finally come home after my 90 minute commute, I just want to pass out in my bed, pull the covers over my head and sleep till the next day.

Thank god for cookies. There's no going wrong with butter and sugar, and the magic that happens when you blend them together with some flour with fresh ginger and add a large pinch of cinnamon. These cookies are soft and chewy on the inside, without the crystallized ginger, they are mildly spicy and go well with a glass of milk in one hand. My friend had a birthday party and as usual, I baked. I gave her a batch of these cookies wrapped in tissue paper with a homemade card tucked into it. I saved a few for myself to get through the cold winter days. I’m advocating cookies increase work morale and productivity. 

Alice Medrich’s Ginger Cookies

For extra heat, crystallized ginger can be added, I was too lazy to buy more ingredients so I left it out though I’ll definitely be using it next time. These cookies can be kept in an airtight container for several days, I kept them for more than a week and they were still good.

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground all-spice
¼ teaspoon salt
1 stick unsalted butter, melted and still warm
¼ cup unsulfured mild or full-flavoured molasses (not Backstrap)
½ cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar, packed
2 teaspoons finely minced fresh ginger
1 egg
¾ cup of crystallized ginger cut into ¼-inch pieces (optional)
½ cup demerara or turbinado sugar or ¼ cup granulated sugar

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven.

Combine the flour, baking soda, ground ginger, cinnamon, allspice, and salt in a medium bowl and mix thoroughly with a whisk.

Combine the warm butter, molasses, sugars, fresh ginger, and egg in a large bowl and mix thoroughly. Add the flour mixture and crystallized ginger (if using) and stir until incorporated. The dough will be soft.

Form the dough into 1-inch balls (0.5 ounce dough for each). Roll the balls in the Demerara sugar and place them 2 inches apart on the lined or ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the cookies puff up and crack on the surface and then begin to deflate in the oven. Rotate the sheets from top to bottom and from back to front halfway through the baking time to ensure even baking. For chewier cookies, remove them from the oven when at least half or more of the cookies have begun to deflate; for crunchier edges with chewy centers, bake for a minute or so longer.

Recipe here!

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