Monday, August 31, 2009

Ginger Cookies

I must apologize for the lack of recipes this month. I spent the holidays in France with my family which was as a great, relaxing break. Cooking, however, is not something that I find myself taking much of a break from, but it was harder to document it, without the time or equipment. I've come back to Montreal full of ideas, and ready to try out some new things.. so be prepared for a few France-inspired recipes in the months to come!

Every time I'm able to go back home, I am reminded of just how much France has shaped my love of food. The cured meats, the cheeses, the salts, the olives oils are all the wonderful beginnings to the perfect meal... and when the start product is so good, it's hard to be disappointed with the end result.

This recipe was inspired by a new cookbook I got that's all about ginger. Ginger is one of those strong and pungent flavors that can really add something special to a recipe. It's a great staple of any stir-fry of course, but also works wonders with desserts. After reading about ginger, I had to get into the kitchen.. so here is the start of my ginger adventure. I tested recipes and came up with my own version of simple, cakey ginger cookies.

Ginger Cookies
Recipe (makes 25-30 cookies)
1 stick of unsalted butter
3/4 cup of brown sugar
1/4 cup of molasses
2 tsp of fresh grated ginger
1 egg
1 tsp of vanilla extract
1/2 tsp of cinnamon
1 1/4 tsp of baking soda
1 1/2 cup of flour
1/4 cup of diced crystallized ginger
2 tbs of granulated sugar

Preheat oven to 325 F. In a bowl, combine the softened butter and brown sugar. Using a hand mixer, beat the mixture until light and fluffy (2 minutes). Add the molasses, fresh ginger, and vanilla and beat until just combined. Add the egg and beat until just combined.

In a separate bowl, add the flour, cinnamon and baking soda and mix. Gradually add the flour mixture to the butter and sugar mixture, lightly beating until the mixture is homogeneous. Fold in the crystallized ginger. Form the dough into a disc, cover with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Once the dough has chilled, form 1 inch balls, roll them in sugar and set on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 12 minutes. Leave to cook on a cooling rack. Enjoy!
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