I have loved watching Ina Garten’s show The Barefoot Contessa on the food network, but its become very hard to catch reruns now as it seems to air randomly. One of my absolute favourite cookbooks is her Barefoot Contessa at Home. The following is my adaptation of her “Ultimate Ginger Cookie” recipe from the book. I found it was just too spicy for my husband and I, to the point our tongues were burning quite a bit after the cookie was gone. Among the changes, I cut the cloves down to a third, as I felt like it was overwhelming the other flavours. I doubled the amount of ginger, halved all the other spices, and cut the amount of flour. It also called for crystallized ginger, but its not something I usually have in the house, so I left it out.
One thing I love about these cookies is that the dough is really easy to work with and the ingredients are those you most likely have in your cupboard and spice cabinet. Kids would love rolling the dough in the sugar and pressing them with the fork. They also contain no dairy products which is great for those with lactose intolerance or milk allergies.
These cookies are thick and have a fabulous soft ‘chew’, with a delicious spicy flavour that is not overwhelming. The smell when they are baking fills your house with the wonderful warm aroma of ginger and spice.
Makes approx. 24 cookies
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup dark brown sugar, lightly packed
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1/3 cup molasses
- 1 egg
- granulated white sugar for rolling cookies
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line two sheet pans with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, ginger and salt. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the brown sugar, oil, and molasses on medium speed for 5 minutes. Turn the mixture to low speed, add the egg, and beat for one minute. Scrape the bowl with a rubber spatula, and beat for one more minute. With the mixer still on low, slowly add the dry ingredients to the bowl and mix on medium speed for two minutes.
Scoop the dough with two spoons or a small ice cream/cookie scoop. With your hands, roll each cookie into a 1 3/4 – inch ball and then roll completely in sugar. Place cookies on sheet pans and then flatten them lightly with the tines of a fork.
Bake for approximately 8 minutes*. The cookies will be crackled on the top/sides and soft inside. Let the cookies cool on the sheet pans for a minute or two, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.
Store in an airtight container to prevent cookies from hardening.
*The original recipe calls for the cookies to be baked for exactly 13 minutes, but I found they were perfect at 8. Times can vary according to your oven, watch for the crackling on the top, cookies will still be soft to the touch until cooled.